Trump denounces Manchester concert attack by 'evil losers'

BETHLEHEM, West Bank, May 23 (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump extended his condolences on Tuesday to the victims of the Manchester suicide bombing that killed 22 people and said those behind the attack were "evil losers."

Trump, speaking after talks with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in the town of Bethlehem in the occupied West Bank, said the United States stands in "absolute solidarity" with the British people.

"I extend my deepest condolences to those so terribly injured in this terrorist attack, and to the many killed and the families, so many families of the victims," Trump said. "So many young, beautiful innocent people living and enjoying their lives murdered by evil losers in life."

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British Prime Minister Theresa May said the incident was being treated as a terrorist attack, making it the deadliest militant assault in Britain since four British Muslims killed 52 people in suicide bombings on London's transport system in July 2005.

Police said the attacker detonated the explosives shortly after 10:33 pm (2133 GMT) at Manchester Arena, as thousands of fans streamed out of a concert by U.S. singer Ariana Grande. Children were among the dead, police said.

"Our society can have no tolerance for this continuation of bloodshed. We cannot stand a moment longer for the slaughter of innocent people," Trump said.

"The terrorists and the extremists and those who give them aid and comfort must be driven out of our society forever. This wicked ideology must be obliterated, and I mean completely obliterated."

Trump is visiting Jerusalem and West Bank on the second part of his maiden foreign trip since taking office in January. Abbas and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu also condemned the Manchester attack. (Reporting by Ari Rabinovitch; Editing by Jeffrey Heller and Ralph Boulton)

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