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Man arrested following discovery of mortar device 'designed to injure or murder' police

The device was discovered in Church View, Strabane in Co Tyrone on Saturday, 7 September.

The mortar device discovered in the Strabane area
The mortar device discovered in the Strabane area
Image: PSNI

A 28-YEAR-OLD man has been arrested in connection with the discovery of a mortar device in Co Tyrone which police said was “designed to injure or murder police officers”. 

The device was discovered in Church View, Strabane on Saturday, 7 September. 

Today, a 28-year-old man was arrested by the PSNI in the Strabane area under the Terrorism Act. 

A number of searches are currently ongoing in the area. 

The arrest and searches are linked to an ongoing investigation into the mortar device that was discovered. 

PSNI Detective Inspector Andrew Hamlin has accused the New IRA of being behind the attack. 

“Whilst this device was aimed at the nearby police station and was undoubtedly designed to injure or murder police officers who work to keep local people safe, it was recklessly left in a public area, just metres away from a number of family homes,” Hamlin said. 

Hamlin said the New IRA “demonstrated once again that they do not care who is hurt or killed by their violent actions”. 

“A number of small children were in close proximity to the deadly device and it is disgraceful that their lives were put at risk,” he said. 

“A number of older and vulnerable people were also forced to leave the comfort and safety of their own homes.” 

Hamlin said he believes that the New IRA members behind the attack “are living in the community, amongst the people whose lives they put at risk”. 

“Our focus is on keeping the community safe and protecting them from the threat posed by these violent groups but we need the help of the public,” he said. 

The PSNI is now calling on people to report any suspicions they have about dangerous and illegal activity in the community to police on 101. 

Alternatively, information can be provided anonymously to UK Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

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