A shop in Manchester has been slammed by people on social media after selling what appears to be a stab vest less than a mile from the Manchester Arena where fanatic Salman Abedi killed 22 people.
Sacha Lord, Night Time Economy Adviser for Greater Manchester, posted a picture online of the garment for sale in a city centre shop on his Twitter account.
It comes just two years after Abedi set off a bomb in the foyer that killed 22 innocent people, including seven children.
The vest is for sale at a shop in Deansgate, in Manchester city centre, located less than a mile from the Arena where the terror attack took place.
Sacha Lord, Night Time Economy Adviser for Greater Manchester, posted a picture of the garment on his Twitter account
Other Twitter users reacted with absolute fury. It comes just two years after a terror attack in Manchester, killing 22 people
Another user said she ‘couldn’t agree more’ with Mr Lord. But another said it was ‘just fashion’
The shop in Manchester city centre is selling what looks like a replica fashion suicide bomb vest
Mr Lord said: ‘This is for sale and displayed in the window of a clothes shop in the city centre.
‘I’ve seen it a few times and each time it’s bothered me. I can only think they think a fake vest is fashionable. What sort of message does that send out.’
One person on Twitter said: ‘Seriously who would design that and think it’s ok and then who would think it’s ok to stick it in a shop window.
‘I know what people wear camo etc but a stab vest type of clothing is a bit odd in these sad times.’
While another person said: ‘First thing I though (sic) if was a bomb vest. why oh why!!’
Some shoppers in the city centre reacted with dismay to the item.
Brad Doyle, apprentice builder, 18 from Eccles. ‘It is a bit questionable, they should definitely take it down.’
And Ahmed Ali, 37, from North Manchester, insurance worker. ‘I think they should take it down considering people’s feelings about it and what they have been through. ‘It is two years but it is still in people’s minds.
‘I think people have moved on but the memory is still fresh.’
But others said it was up to the shop if they wanted to take it down.
Steve Davies, 60, Salford, engineer. ‘It is not offensive to me, but I recognise how it could be. ‘It’s a philosophical argument whether they should take it down, it’s down to them isn’t it?’
One employee of the store, who did not wish to give his name, refuted the idea the item was offensive. He said: ‘It’s just fashion, people are wearing it. ‘Rappers wear it in rap videos.
‘It is just a fashion item. To be honest we have not had anyone come in and say anything.’
Manchester Arena suicide bomber Salman Abedi, killed 22 innocent people after blowing himself up
The vest is for sale at a shop in Deansgate, in Manchester city centre, less than a mile from the Arena where the terror attack took place
The owner of the store, who did not wish to be named, also said there had been no complaints and said there had been lots of similar vests on sale when he visited a fashion showroom in Manchester yesterday.
He said: ‘It is not a suicide vest – if anything it resembles a bulletproof vest or a stabproof vest. ‘We have not actually had anyone complain, no one has come to me about that or been in to say they are upset.
‘If you watch grime videos you will see these – basically they are in fashion at the moment. ‘We are selling a lot of them online, people like Drake wear them.’
Some 22 men, women and children were murdered at the Manchester Arena when suicide bomber Salman Abedi detonated a device in the foyer at the end of Ariana Grande’s show.
Events took place across the city last week to mark two years since the bombing.
Including a private memorial service at St Ann’s Church in Manchester for the families of those killed, anyone injured in the attack and the emergency workers who attended the devastating scene.
Grande organised and performed at the One Love concert in June 2017 to raise money for the emergency fund launched following the attack, and has regularly spoken since about the trauma of events that night.
The inquests into the deaths of the 22 victims have been delayed while authorities await the extradition from Libya of Hashem Abedi, the brother of suicide bomber Salman Abedi.