12 January 2006

CIRA says it left bomb in the grounds of Armagh hotel

Daily Ireland


The Continuity IRA has admitted leaving a bomb at an Armagh hotel yesterday.
In a statement issued to Daily Ireland, a spokesperson for the organisation said Armagh City Hotel and a neighbouring PSNI station had both been targets of the car-bomb attack.
A spokesperson for the anti-Good Friday Agreement group said the hotel had been targeted because it regularly hosted meetings of Armagh District Policing Partnership and let members of the security forces use its premises.
The spokesperson said the hotel would be targeted again if it continued to host meetings of the policing body and serve security force members. In 1998, the Real IRA launched a mortar attack on the nearby RUC barracks from the grounds of the hotel.
British army bomb-squad officers spent several hours yesterday defusing the device, which included several gas cylinders. The officers carried out a number of controlled explosions during the operation.
The device had been placed in a Vauxhall Vectra car, which the PSNI said might have been stolen in Armagh city on Tuesday.
A number of men calling themselves “republicans” seized two cars and a shotgun during a raid on a house in the Ballyrath district of Armagh at around 11pm on Tuesday.
A car, believed to be one of the stolen vehicles, was later found on fire in the Armagh area.
In north Belfast yesterday, a pipe bomb was made safe on the Cavehill Road after being found on a wall close to licensed premises.

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