DISSIDENT republicans are believed to be behind a suspected bomb that was discovered in a vehicle near the Border.
Five men were arrested after the device was discovered in Kilcurry, Co Louth, following an operation by the garda special detective unit.
A beer keg was found in the back of a car with a number of components used in improvised explosive devices.
Gardai believe the five, who are being questioned in garda stations in Dundalk and Drogheda, are linked to the dissident republican grouping Oglaigh na hEireann.
“During the course of this operation, five men were arrested ranging in ages from early 70s to mid-50s.
“They are detained at Drogheda and Dundalk garda stations under the provisions of Section 30 Offences Against the State Act.
“A suspect device was recovered during this operation,” a garda statement said.
The men can be held for up to three days.
A similar-type device was seized in Lucan last week.
Residents of the Finnstown Country House Hotel were forced to spend more than five hours outside the hotel overnight after gardai found a milk churn bomb armed and ready for use in a car with Northern Ireland registration plates.
The alarm was raised after a 999 emergency call was made to gardai.
The bomb contained 50lb of fertilizer and had a timer attached.
Gardai arrested a man in a follow-up operation in inner city Dublin.
General manager of the hotel, Gavin Creaton, confirmed there was a “full house” at the time the alarm was raised about the device.
He said he had undertaken the appropriate measures in order to ensure the safety of the hotel’s guests.