Bomb attack at British Army base
Bomb attack at British Army base

A bomb exploded at a British army base in north Belfast earlier today.

A loud blast was heard in the early hours of the morning. There were no injuries and no immediate claim of responsibility.

The British Territorial Army base on the Antrim Road was struck by the attack. Its perimeter fence was damaged in the incident.

“In North Belfast we have witnessed an escalation of dissident Republican terrorist activity,” Nigel Dodds, the local DUP MP told the London parliament. He blamed the attack on “criminal elements”.

Sinn Fein’s Tierna Cunningham also condemned the attack, saying: “Whatever group was responsible they need to realise that they will not succeed in their attempts to derail the peace process.”

Last week a member of the PSNI narrowly escaped injury when a device exploded underneath a sports car owned by his partner.

Earlier this week, a senior member of the British Crown forces in Ireland said that dissident republican groups pose a “severe and increasing threat”.

PSNI deputy chief Judith Gillespie said hundreds of people had already joined the breakaway armed groups, and new members were continuing to join.

Speaking to the establishment media, she said: “We are obviously very concerned at the level of threat and it behoves us all to work together.”

She also said the PSNI did not want to see British soldiers back on the streets and insisted the force had the capacity to defend British rule without on-street military support.

The press conference took place at the opening of a joint seminar between the 26 County Garda police and the PSNI police in the Six Counties.

In contrast, the British Irish Inter-parliamentary Assembly, meeting in Swansea, was told that “peace... is now relatively secure”.

Former British Direct Ruler Paul Murphy said while the death of two British Army soldiers and a member of the PSNI in March showed peace could not be taken for granted, the opportunity existed to confront the “new economic challenges”.

“That is a peace dividend that will benefit all British and Irish people,” Mr Murphy, co-chair of the Assembly, said.

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