Man arrested and mortar device recovered in west Belfast



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A bomb has been seized by police investigating dissident republican terrorism in Northern Ireland.

A holdall with an improvised explosive device was discovered by officers in the Shaw’s Road area of west Belfast.

A man aged 22 was arrested after he was stopped walking in the area late on Thursday night.

The bomb is being forensically examined and police appealed for anybody with information to contact them.

SDLP MLA Tim Attwood said: “This is another extremely worrying development.

“There is no support for this kind of destructive activity in our city.

“People are sick, sore and tired of being forced from their homes or having their elderly relatives forced out.”

Stormont justice minister David Ford said good police work had potentially saved lives.

He said: “The policing operation which led to the discovery of a significant explosive device and subsequent arrest has undoubtedly prevented the misery that those criminals had hoped for.

“How can any cause be served by putting a potentially deadly device in a built-up residential area?”

Dissidents opposed to the peace process have stepped up activity in recent months, including the pre-Christmas targeting of Belfast businesses and efforts to attack members of the security services.

A device was thrown at a police vehicle in west Belfast recently.