A car bomb exploded in Derry city tonight in a commercial riverside district near the junction of the Strand Road and Culmore Road.
There were no casualties, but substantial damage was caused to the Da Vinci’s hotel, a branch of Ulster Bank and a retail centre.
It is understood a warning was received an hour before the bomb exploded and the area had been cordoned off.
There has been no claim of responsibility so far, although a breakaway IRA group is understood to have carried out the attack,.
The bombing comes during the annual conference in Birmingham of Britain’s ruling Conservative Party, their first while in power for 14 years.
Sinn Fein’s Derry-based Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness is controversially scheduled to speak at a fringe event at the conference later today [Tuesday], the first time a member of the Sinn Fein leadership has attended a Tory conference.
The North’s First Minister Peter Robinson, the SDLP leader Margaret Ritchie and former Unionist Party Leader Reg Empey are also scheduled to attend.