North Belfast bombers ‘at war with their own community’

A bomb disposal robot inspects the suspect device
A bomb disposal robot inspects the suspect device

A pipe bomb has been discovered in north Belfast.

A controlled explosion was carried out by Army technical officers and the device removed for forensic examination.

An 
Army technical expert at the scene of the suspect device at North Queen Street in Belfast

An Army technical expert at the scene of the suspect device at North Queen Street in Belfast

The security alert in the North Queen Street area has ended and all roads reopened.

Detective Inspector Mary White said: “This incident has caused massive inconvenience, disruption and upset for the local community of north Belfast and I would like to thank the members of the public for their patience and co-operation during the operation this morning.”

Two women, aged 27 and 38, were arrested on suspicion of breaching the police cordon around the security operation and are being questioned.

Detectives appealed for anyone who noticed suspicious activity to contact police.

Sinn Fein MLA Caral Ni Chuilin said those responsible for leaving the device are at war with their own community.

She added: “Residents were forced out of their homes for several hours today while this device was being dealt with.

“Those responsible showed no concern or care about the safety of the residents or passers-by.

“It is no surprise to anyone that this incident followed a night of anti-social behaviour in the area associated with a nearby bonfire, which included street fighting among rival gangs and the theft and burning of local property.”

She said hammers and knives were recovered and the explosive spotted.

“The people responsible for placing this device are at war with their own community. They should stop their futile actions before they kill or seriously injure someone.”