14 July 2005

Children in peril from car bomb

::: u.tv :::

THURSDAY 14/07/2005 16:52:42

Children walked past a primed bomb that would have caused a deadly fireball had it exploded, it was claimed tonight.

Gas cylinders packed with explosives and a timer power unit were left in a green Hyundai car parked on a roadside between Milford village and Armagh city in Northern Ireland.

Military explosives experts who defused the device last night also found two containers of petrol in the boot.
Political representatives in the area were horrified by the discovery.

SDLP Councillor Gerald Mallon said: "Whatever organisation was responsible, they have no respect for the local people or for local businesses.

"What is more frightening is the reality that local children and mothers with prams have been walking up and down this road during the holiday period.

"Little did they know they were walking past a live bomb."
Police Superintendent Kenny Maclean also hit out at the terrorists involved.

He said: "The resultant explosion would have taken the form of a large fireball and shrapnel.

"It would have caused indiscriminate injury to members of the public who passed along the busy Monaghan Road."

The bomb was found after searches across Northern Ireland.

In a coded warning issued to a Belfast media outlet earlier, 15 locations were mentioned, half of them in the Armagh area.

All other areas were declared bomb-free and safe.

Two controlled explosions were carried out on the car, fitted with false number plates, parked on a bridge later on Tuesday night or early on Wednesday.

Detectives urged any witnesses to contact them.

Mr Maclean added: "Where the device was placed was on a road bridge over the River Callan, a place popular with anglers who often leave their own vehicles at the same spot to access the riverbank."

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