Fermanagh attack claimed
Fermanagh attack claimed

Two republican groups have separately claimed responsibility for a roadside device which targeted the PSNI police in County Fermanagh this week.

The Newtownbutler-Clones/Cavan Road at Wattlebridge was closed for four days as members of the British Crown forces investigated the device, which was reported to have been booby-trapped.

The discovery was made following two calls, one by the Real IRA and one by the Continuity IRA, at around lunchtime last Saturday. The area around the site of the bomb was immediately sealed off and the road remained closed until Tuesday.

The attack sparked calls from one Ulster Unionist Assembly member for the British Army to be brought back to patrol the Border areas.

In August two PSNI members escaped without injury when a rocket attack failed to detonate and in June two others escaped after explosives packed into a milk churn and beer keg failed to explode.

Tom Elliot said militant republicans in Fermanagh may be getting help from “mainstream republicanism”.

“You just don’t carry these attacks out with a small group.

“Obviously the dissidents are being blamed, however I just believe there’s a lot more of these people in the area in these operations than was maybe first envisaged by security forces,” he said.

Mr Eliott called for “limited Army personnel” to support the PSNI in the area.

Locals in the general hinterland were annoyed at the disruption caused by the closure of the road for four days.

Thomas O’Reilly, the Sinn Féin chairman of Fermanagh District Council, said the bomb alert at Wattlebridge had caused considerable inconvenience.

“As Chair of Fermanagh District Council, I want to say this is nonsensical activity to be involved and I call in anyone involved in this to stop.

“We have a system in place if all parties involved have a will to make it work. Leaving devices along the road is not the way forward.”


The Irish Republican Prisoners Welfare Association has expressed concern over the medical condition of republican prisoner Aidan Hulme in Portlaoise Prison.

Prior to his arrest and imprisonment on ‘Real IRA’ charges in England, Hulme was involved in a motorcycle accident that left him with a severely injured leg. He was repatriated to Ireland from Belmarsh prison in December 2006.

Hulme, who is now bed-bound with possible gangrene in his injured leg, has not been allowed to see a medical consultant on his condition.

Marion Price of the IRPWA said her group would be launching a petition to the Dublin governmewnt so that Hulme can receive appropriate medical attention.

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