Friday 30 September 2016

Massive security operation for Charles and Camilla's Irish trip

Greg Harkin

Published 07/05/2015 | 02:30

The Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall are to visit the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland this month
The Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall are to visit the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland this month

A massive polling day security operation swung into action across the North last night to counter dissident terror threats.

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Gardaí and the PSNI have also stepped up their security plans ahead of a visit by Prince Charles to the North West in two weeks' time.

Detectives have already increased patrols in north Sligo, where Charles and Camilla are due to the visit the scene of the 1979 murder of Lord Mountbatten in Mullaghmore.

Armed garda regional response units have been deployed in the border area between Fermanagh and Donegal.

Cross-border meetings involving gardaí and the PSNI have also taken place, with both forces deploying some of the security measures used during the G8 summit in 2013.

Charles and Camilla will be visiting the North and Republic between May 19 and 22.

They are expected to visit Sligo on May 20 and 21. They may also visit parts of Donegal.

There are no plans for them to visit Dublin, according to Clarence House.

In the North last night, there was a highly visible security presence, particularly in Belfast.

Police checkpoints were set up on all main roads around the city in a scene reminiscent of the Troubles.

Polling stations in schools and public buildings as well as count centres will also be given extra security when they open for the Westminster elections this morning.

PSNI Assistant Chief Constable Stephen Martin said extra patrols will continue for a number of days.

"This is not a decision we take lightly and we will endeavour to ensure that the balance of how we police this threat is right, as well as trying to keep disruption to a minimum.

"There is no perfect security solution to terrorism. I would ask people to continue to be vigilant at all times," he said.

Irish Independent

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