Security services should not be spared embarrassment by withholding key evidence into Manchester Arena bombing, say lawyers

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Security services should not be spared embarrassment by being allowed to withhold key evidence into the Manchester Arena bombing, lawyers on behalf of the victims’ families have said. 

Sir John Saunders, the coroner presiding over the inquest into the Arena attack, had been urged to proceed with full transparency when the public hearing commences on April 6 2020. 

But police and security services can apply for public interest immunity which, if successful, will make them exempt from sharing some evidence relating to the bombing in the interest of national security. 

Today’s third pre-inquest review was attended by the families of the 22 people murdered by suicide bomber Salman Abedi at the end of an Ariana Grande concert in May 2017.

Representing several families who lost their loved ones in the attack, John Cooper QC said that there is already “significant material” in the public domain which “exposes the shortcomings” of the security agencies. 

“The demonstration of transparency is at its highest in a case such as this,” Mr Cooper told the hearing at Manchester Town Hall. 



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