Twenty two people, including a number of children, were killed in a terrorist attack at an Ariana Grande concert in Manchester Arena in the evening of Monday 22 May. Islamic State claimed responsibility for the attack. The threat level was raised from severe to critical and about 1000 troops were deployed to Britain’s streets. Joe Clokey had some stressful hours trying to get hold of his sister.
photo Hollandse Hoogte
‘I am closely following the general elections in my country, so I immediately saw the first posts on Twitter. There wasn’t much information at first, only the rumours of a “loud noise”. Only after several hours was more clarity given about the origin of the explosions.
These first moments were very stressful, because my sister lives in Manchester. She is working at a firm that helps organize events and this firm was hired for the Ariana Grande concert. My parents, especially, were freaking out when we didn’t hear from her, but luckily she was just asleep.
The first reaction of the government was to put more troops on the street, but right now they think they’ve got it under control. At least the threat level changed back from critical to severe a few days ago. Personally, I was worried about the influence this event might have on the elections on the 8th of June. You would expect people to vote more right-wing. This would mean even more isolation after Brexit, while we already have distanced ourselves from other countries. This seems short-sighted to me.
Luckily, the Manchester attack only seems to have slightly improved May’s personal ratings. I think it has to do with the British mentality: “keep calm and carry on”. People are always putting things in perspective and don’t base something important as a vote on one single incident.’