independent

Sunday 20 April 2014

Marathon bombers in threat to kill police chief

BOMBERS who disrupted yesterday's Belfast Marathon threatened to kill Northern Ireland Chief Constable Hugh Orde.

The race had to be diverted during a major security alert after runners had set off on the 26-mile course.

Some of the main competitors had already passed the part of the route where British army explosives experts were brought in to defuse a live device.

Veteran journalist Eamonn Mallie said he received the bomb warning in a telephone call after the race started.

He revealed last night: "An anonymous male caller said volunteers under command have abandoned a device.

"And then in the last line he said: 'Tell Hugh Orde we will get him the next time'."

Mr Ordewas in the field for yesterday's race.

It is understood he pulled up early due to a leg injury.

With dissident republican terrorists suspected over the alert, organisers directed runners on to an alternative path.

The bomb was discovered at Gideon's Corner, Newtownabbey on the outskirts of the city, a changeover point in the relay race.

Duncan McCausland, the Assistant Chief Constable for Belfast, said: "Those responsible have shown their disregard for the lives of Belfast residents and visitors alike."

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