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Pipe bomb explodes, and another defused, in Belfast

The Army is called in to deal with a pipe bomb shortly after an explosion in West Belfast near the Falls Road.

Police at the site of St James Park in West Belfast after a pipe bomb detonated there last night.
Police at the site of St James Park in West Belfast after a pipe bomb detonated there last night.
Image: Peter Morrison/AP

THE ARMY were called into Belfast late last night to deal with a pipe bomb found just a few hundred yards form the site where another one had exploded a few hours earlier.

Officers from the bomb disposal unit were called to La Salle Park, in the west of the city, last night after a home-made pipe bomb had detonated at about 8pm at the nearby St James Park.

The bomb that did go off is reported by the BBC to have been attached to a container of petrol. Nobody was injured as a result of either incident, though a number of homes had to be evacuated while the devices were removed.

A family of six – which included a four-year-old girl and a pregnant woman – were among those who were reportedly nearby the site of the explosion at La Salle Park, where the blast damaged a car and a van.

The western area of the city is known as being a predominantly nationalist area, though the Police Service of Northern Ireland has refused to give any indication of who it believes may have been behind the attacks.

A local Sinn Féin councillor, Briege Brownlee, condemned the attack and said those behind them had “shown absolute disregard for this community.

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“St James has suffered enough over the period of the conflict without reckless actions such as this causing distress and upset.”

About the author:

Gavan Reilly

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