Salman Abedi claimed 22 lives when he detonated a bomb at Manchester Arena in 2017. But he didn’t act alone.
His brother Hashem, who lived in Fallowfield, helped him plan the attack and assemble the explosive.
Yesterday the 23-year-old was locked up for his role in the mass murder at the Ariana Grande concert.
Abedi, who refused to leave his cell for sentencing at the Old Bailey, was given a minimum of 55 years – with the court previously hearing he was “just as guilty” as his sibling.
He may never be released.
The city of Manchester, shaken to the core by that horrific night more than three years ago, has now responded to the verdict.
Mayor of Greater Manchester, Andy Burnham, called the attack an act of “pure evil”.
“We said at the time that we would do whatever we could to ensure those responsible were brought to justice and it is a relief that it has finally happened,” the Mayor commented.
“Today we think first of the families who lost loved-ones and everyone whose lives were changed forever by this appalling crime.”
He added: “This attack on our city and everything it represents caused untold misery. But ultimately it failed. It was meant to divide us but it only brought us closer together. And now one of those responsible is behind bars.”
Manchester City Council leader, Sir Richard Leese, also spoke out following Abedi’s sentencing.
He said that “no sentence can ever truly reflect the magnitude of the crime, but I hope that Hasehm Abedi being locked up for life will provide some measure of comfort for those who lost loved ones and everyone else affected.”
Chief Constable of Greater Manchester Police, Ian Hopkins, said the sentence will “not bring closure” for families of the victims, but “it may ease the pain” to know that Abedi will spent the a large part of his life in his prison cell.
The police chief also commended the support from the British Government and CPS for their work in extraditing Abedi from Libya, where he was at the time of the attacks, to face trial and prosecution.
Given how Abedi was under the age of 21 at the time of the attack, a whole life order was not possible by law.
However, the 55-year minimum term he received is also the longest ever issued by a court in UK legal history.
Sir David Jason set for TV return in Only Fools and Horses documentary Christmas special
In a surprise bit of festive news, the only and only Sir David Jason is returning for an Only Fools and Horses Christmas special this December. Lovely jubbly!
The best-loved and most-watched British comedy of all time will be back on our screens in documentary form this festive season, with Del Boy himself David Jason revisiting the iconic comedy character after 20 years he last played him on screen.
While the legendary sitcom was broadcast on BBC back in the day, the highly-anticipated Only Fools doc will be airing on Channel 5 right before Christmas as a special one-off programme.
Looking back on the show’s incredible run on UK screens over seven series and the several ‘Christmas Cracker’ specials, specifically, the latest Only Fools and Horses documentary will see Jason and a number of other guests appearing to chat about the legendary show.
While it’s still unclear how many of the original cast will be appearing, Jason’s on-screen wife Tessa Peake-Jones (Raquel) is confirmed to be appearing along with other special guests including newscaster Krishnan Guru-Murthy and Bendiorm‘s Sherrie Hewson.
Sadly, a full theatrical reunion just isn’t on the cards following the deaths of Roger Lloyd Pack (Trigger), Kenneth MacDonald (Mike the Landlord) and Buster Merryfield (Uncle Albert) in the 30 years since the show ended its run.
Only Fools writer John Sullivan also sadly passed away aged 64 in 2011 and fellow co-star Nicholas Lyndhurst, a.k.a. Rodney Trotter, told Metro: “We can’t. John is no longer with us. John was the driving force of the show and we have also lost quite a few cast members now.
“I don’t think I could do it without them and I certainly couldn’t do it without John. At the risk of depressing everyone, I think the last two times I’ve seen David has been at funerals.”
Simply entitled, ‘The Story Of Only Fools And Horses At Christmas’, the 90-minute special is yet to have its broadcast date fully confirmed but you best keep your eyes peeled on the TV guide — we’ll let you know as soon we do.
Jason, 81, has only just recovered from hip surgery earlier this year, so it’ll be nice to see his familiar grin back on our screens.
Right, we’re off to binge a whole series on UK Gold.
Habas restaurant in Manchester announces shock closure – with huge closing-down discount
Habas, the Middle Eastern restaurant launched by the team behind El Gato Negro, has announced its shock closure.
The subterranean restaurant will be going out with a bang though, promising one last knees-up with a big discount.
Habas will be doing 25% off its entire food and drink menu this New Year’s Eve so that fans of the eatery can raise a glass to the Manchester restaurant.
They’re also hoping that Mancs will raise a glass to new beginnings, teasing a brand new concept.
Habas is located at Brown Street in Manchester city centre and has been serving up its Middle Eastern menu since 2021.
It comes from Mills Hill Developments Limited, the company also responsible for El Gato Negro and Canto, fronted by celebrated chef Simon Shaw.
Habas has stressed that its closure ‘is not forever’ as it announces details of its New Year’s Eve closing down party.
You can ring in the new year with a selection of mezze dishes, sharing platters and small plates, feasting on chicken tagine and traditional tzatziki, all 25% off on Sunday 31 December.
Drinks, too, like the cranberry elderflower martini, blackberry ginger smash and clementine daquiri will be with 25% off.
Simon Shaw, Chef Parton at Mills Hill Developments Limited, said: “As of January 2024, we have made the decision to close the doors of Habas Bar & Restaurant, however we are thrilled to announce that our Brown Street venue has an exciting new concept on the way.
“Throughout December, Habas, will continue serving up the city’s best middle-eastern cuisine, so make sure you pop in and see us. AND on New Year’s Eve, Habas, will be hosting an unforgettable celebration with 25% off food and drinks. We want to rejoice with all of our customers, with one final hurrah!
“We would like to thank all of our guests and reassure Habas fans that this is not the end of Habas Bar & Restaurant forever, simply a farewell from Brown Street for now.
“We look forward to welcoming you to our new exciting concept in Q1 of 2024.”