Monday 24 November 2014

Parcel bombs posted to British army offices all sent from here

Tom Brady Security Editor

Published 25/02/2014 | 02:30

The Army Careers office in Canterbury, Kent, one of the armed forces recruitment offices where suspected explosive devices have been found. Picture: Gareth Fuller/PA Wire
The Army Careers office in Canterbury, Kent, one of the armed forces recruitment offices where suspected explosive devices have been found. Picture: Gareth Fuller/PA Wire

ALL seven parcel bombs sent to British army recruitment centres were posted from Ireland, forensic tests have established.

The crude explosive devices were sent to British army careers offices over a three-day period earlier this month.

They were all dealt with and defused by British army bomb disposal experts.

Initial examination of the parcels indicated that at least one had been posted from the Republic of Ireland.

But subsequent checks have confirmed that all seven were sent from postal sorting centres in this jurisdiction.

Garda officers met with detectives from Scotland Yard's anti-terrorist unit in recent days to review progress in their joint inquiries.

But police on both sides of the Border are satisfied the parcels were mailed as part of a new campaign of terror being carried out by the so-called New IRA alliance.

Two of the packages were intercepted at a careers office in Reading, Berkshire, and the British army and RAF recruitment building in Chatham, Kent.

CRUDE

Another parcel was found in Aldershot, Hampshire, the following day and the other four were discovered a further 24 hours later at careers offices in Oxford, Brighton, Canterbury and the Queensmere shopping centre in Slough.

The packages were said to be crudely designed, but potentially viable and could have caused serious injury if they had exploded when opened.

Following the discovery of the packages, British Prime Minister David Cameron chaired a meeting of the British government's Cobra emergencies committee to discuss the threat posed by the new campaign. Some of the parcels bore similarities to packages posted in Northern Ireland in October.

Tanaiste Eamon Gilmore has pledged the Government's full co-operation in the probe.

The New IRA alliance has been attempting to launch a new offensive in Britain since it was formed in summer 2012.

A particular focus in the current police inquiries is being placed on a key member of the alliance, based in Derry city. This man is the former leader of the Real IRA in the city and had previously boasted that his gang would launch a campaign of violence in Britain.

Irish Independent

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