Irish Republican News · July 9, 2004
[Irish Republican News]

[Irish Republican News]
Parcel bombs linked to dissidents

The breakaway ‘Real IRA’ was thought to have carried out parcel bomb attacks on the governor of Maghaberry prison and and four members of District Policing Partnerships (DPPs).

Three devices were discovered at the Mallusk centre in County Antrim as staff sorted mail in the early hours of yesterday. Two more were discovered in follow-up searches.

One of the three parcel bombs intercepted at Mallusk sorting office was addressed to the governor of Maghaberry Prison.

Workers were evacuated twice from the sorting centre while British Army bomb disposal experts defused the devices, which were described as “crude but viable”.

A full security sweep of the complex took place yesterday, with a deployment of PSNI police searching through thousands of items of mail by hand.

British Direct Ruler Paul Murphy condemned the attacks.

“These activities have no place in the Northern Ireland of the 21st century,” he said.

Policing Board vice-chairman Denis Bradley said it was “disturbing for the people involved”.

“They are doing their best, they have taken a stance around policing - to get in there and help and make it more sensitive to the needs and desires of the community,” he said.

“They are being targeted and picked out in this horrible parlance of ‘legitimate targets’ - first of all as if there was anyone was a target, and secondly as if anything of this nature was legitimate.”

Meanwhile, supporters of republicans imprisoned at Maghaberry have called for street demonstrations “to highlight the ongoing harassment and abuse of Republican prisoners in Maghaberry Jail”.

In a statement announcing a street protest later this month, the Irish Republican Prisoners Welfare Association (IRPWA) said:

“Despite achieving the hard won but moderate demand of segregation from Loyalists and criminals the POW’s in Roe House are still under pressure from the Prison Administration and vindictive screws.

“This includes the continuation of forced strip searches, denials of basic amenities, the intensification and lengthening of lock-up time plus the humiliation still being endured by visiting family members, friends and political representatives.

“We urge everyone to stand behind these men and their families by coming out onto the streets in the coming weeks and making their voices heard once more.”

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© 2004 Irish Republican News