A major mosque has reportedly said it will refuse to bury the remains of the suicide bomber who killed 22 people last week in Manchester, amid official efforts to prevent his interment within the city.
The Manchester Central Mosque, which provides traditional funeral services to the city’s Muslim community, said its executive committee had agreed not to inter Salman Abedi’s body if asked, The Times of London reported Wednesday.
The Manchester Evening News claimed that Abedi’s remains were being kept at a morgue outside the Greater Manchester area. One source told the newspaper that the authorities would do “everything in their power” to prevent Abedi being buried, cremated or laid to rest in the city.
According to the Times, the Manchester Central Mosque has agreed to official municipal requests not to bury the body during the traditional “burial service” it will carry out.
It was not immediately clear who would be responsible for disposing of the remains or how the city planned to do so.
The bombing killed 22 people and injured more than 100 after a show by American singer Ariana Grande at Manchester Arena.
The question of Abedi’s burial echoed a debate that has raged in Israel over the burial of Palestinian terrorists who have carried out attacks against Israelis.
At times, Israeli authorities have refused to return bodies of terrorists to their relatives for fear that the funerals would turn into mass rallies in support of further terror attacks but the practice has been implemented inconsistently.
Israeli officials have explained that the delay in returning attackers’ bodies is intended to lessen the significance attached to any particular attacker, and so reduce attendance at the funerals.