Secretary of State Rex Tillerson will visit London on Friday, just days after a terrorist attack in the United Kingdom killed at least 22 people and injured dozens more, the State Department announced Thursday.
Tillerson will meet with Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson and offer his condolences on Americans’ behalf for Monday’s attack in Manchester, State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said in a statement.
“The secretary will reaffirm America’s commitment to the special relationship between the United States and the United Kingdom and our solidarity in defeating terrorism in every part of the world,” Nauert added. “During the visit, Secretary Tillerson and the foreign secretary will sign the book of condolence for victims of the Manchester attack after which they will deliver short statements to media.”
President Donald Trump, speaking earlier Thursday in Brussels outside NATO headquarters, called the attack a “savage” and “terrible thing” that also “demonstrates the depths of the evil we face with terrorism.”
“Innocent little girls and so many others were horribly murdered and badly injured while attending a concert,” he said. “Beautiful lives with so much great potential, torn from their families forever and ever. It was a barbaric and vicious attack upon our civilization.”
Trump pledged in a statement released by the White House to “get to the bottom” of what he called “deeply troubling” government leaks. The statement followed reports that the U.K. stopped sharing information with the United States about its investigation into the Manchester attack.
Trump said he would ask the Justice Department and other agencies “to launch a complete review of this matter, and if appropriate, the culprit should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.”
“There is no relationship we cherish more than the special relationship between the United States and the United Kingdom,” he added.
The president spoke with British Prime Minister Theresa May on Tuesday. The White House said he reassured May “that Americans stand with the people of the United Kingdom and that our resolve will never waiver in the face of terrorism” and offered aid in its investigation.