Republican News · Thursday 20 April 2000

[An Phoblacht]

Helicopter attack on house


Sinn Féin is accusing the British Army of a cover up following a helicopter incident in Derry.

Two workmen escaped death when a ball of hard clay was thrown from a British Army helicopter. Eyewitnesses say the object was seen being thrown from a British Army helicopter that had been hovering above a house at Ballymagroarty in Derry.

Daniel Moran said that he and a workmate had been carrying out insulation work in the attic.

``We heard a helicopter directly above the house and the next thing there was a big bang. The thing flew past us as we dived to the floor. It just came right through the roof. We thought it was a bomb.

``I was kneeling down fixing the pipes and was just two feet away when it crashed into the attic. I could have been killed. I'm shocked.''

Mary Nelis, Sinn Féin Assembly member for Foyle, has demanded to know why flights were still taking place over residential and built-up areas despite the inherent dangers of such practices, only recently highlighted by helicopters coming down in South Armagh and near Toomebridge last week.

``It is stretching credulity to accept that this incident was merely a coincidence when one considers that this was the only roof space in Ballymagroarty which was being worked on just as a British Army helicopter was flying overhead,'' said Nelis. ``The British government must account for the actions of its armed forces and I have written to British Minister Adam Ingram demanding immediate answers.''

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