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British PM to chair meeting of emergency response committee after Manchester blast

May 23, 7:53 UTC+3 LONDON

"All our thoughts are with the victims and the families of those who have been affected," the prime minister said

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© Peter Byrne/PA via AP

LONDON, May 23./TASS/. British Prime Minister Theresa May will chair on Tuesday a meeting of the Government’s emergency Cobra committee following the blast at the Manchester Arena in which 19 people have been confirmed dead, the UK’s national news agency PA said.

"Theresa May has suspended her General Election campaign after the suspected terrorist attack in Manchester," it said. "The Prime Minister, who will chair a meeting of the Government’s emergency Cobra committee, said the incident at Manchester Arena was being treated by police as an ‘appalling terrorist attack’," the news agency said.

The Cobra meeting is expected to take place at around 9am, Downing Street said.

"We are working to establish the full details of what is being treated by the police as an appalling terrorist attack," Theresa May said in a statement.

"All our thoughts are with the victims and the families of those who have been affected," the prime minister said.

Earlier, police said at least 19 people were killed and about 50 were injured in a blast at the Manchester Arena after a concert of American pop singer Ariana Grande.

The blast "is currently being treated as a terrorist incident until police know otherwise," Greater Manchester Police tweeted. According to eyewitnesses, there were mostly teenagers among the concertgoers.

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