Irish Republican News · November 10, 2003
[Irish Republican News]

[Irish Republican News]
Bomb attack follows Holy Cross drama

A mother-of-three became the latest target of unionist violence less than 24 hours after the screening of the controversial Holy Cross BBC drama about the intimidation and violence directed against the girls primary school in 2001.

The pipe-bomb device was found by police near Tina Gallagher's home at the junction of the Crumlin Road and Kerrera Street at around 9.40am yesterday.

A caller to a Belfast newsroom claiming to represent the supposedly defunct Red Hand Defenders -- a cover name used in the past by the UDA -- admitted responsibility.

It was also claimed that Ms Gallagher had been targeted because she was a spokesperson for the Holy Cross parents - a position which she never held.

The bomb incident came less than 24 hours after the broadcast of a controversial drama over the gauntlet of abuse which nationalist families were forced to endure for several months.

Last night Fr Troy, chairman of the school's board of governors, said the children and parents of Holy Cross have ``suffered enough''.

The attempted attack, he said, was ``the exact opposite to what we wanted to happen in the community''.

``It is an awful feeling, that a few words would spark something like that. It is very, very sad,'' he said.

``It's the exact opposite to what I had hoped for. It is why I had not spoken about it, I deliberately took myself out of all of it.

``I think the children and parents have suffered enough and the school has been in the spotlight too much for any positive outcome.''

Fr Troy called on both communities to unite in a show of solidarity against the bombers.

``We owe it to the children not to be the cause of suffering,'' he said.

``I hope this is an isolated incident and that the community can rally together and say we have no time for this type of activity.''

Sinn Fein representative Kathy Stanton said: ``The RHD, who have claimed the attack, is simply a cover name for the UDA. What we see here is a continuation of the loyalist campaign against nationalists in north Belfast.''

  • A family with a five-year-old child have narrowly escaped injury when their north Belfast home was destroyed in an arson attack.

    The couple and their child were treated for smoke inhalation and shock. The fire which destroyed their home was triggered after an oil tank was set on fire at Lansdowne Park just after 2 a.m. today.

    The ensuing fire destroyed their home and substantially damaged a nearby house.

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    © 2003 Irish Republican News