NORTHERN Ireland's Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness has been warned by police that dissident republicans have issued a death threat against him.
The "real and active" threat is believed to be linked to his condemnation of the foiled mortar bomb attack on a police station in his native Derry on Sunday night and other remarks he made in support of the PSNI.
SDLP's Conall McDevitt also revealed he had received a bullet and a sympathy card by post.
The threats are thought to have been made by members of the New IRA alliance, which has a base in Derry.
Mr McGuinness, pictured, said he had been informed of the threat by a senior PSNI officer on Wednesday night.
But he declared that he would not be silenced by the dissident republicans.
He said: "Both myself and the PSNI are taking this threat seriously. However, there are times when in political leadership staying silent is not an option and I will not be silenced by threats like this".
Mr McGuinness said he would "defend the peace process from attack from whatever quarter, be it these groups or the loyalist flag protesters.
"It says much about the mentality of those controlling groups like the one behind the threat that in their warped logic, threatening Irish republicans and their families somehow advances the cause of Irish reunification.
"I am very sure of the ground I stand upon. I am also very sure that it is the path shared by republicans across this island, genuinely interested in building a new, agreed Ireland, republicans who put Ireland before ego, criminality and self gain," he added.
Mr McDevitt, a representative for south Belfast, also said he would not be deterred.