‘The IRA remains willing to target state agents, paid or not, and will continue to do so while the denial of self-determination continues – The ‘IRA’.
THE paramilitary group known as the ‘IRA’ has threatened to target civilians who help or work for the security forces at suspected bomb scenes.
The threat came as the organisation claimed responsibility for two devices found in the north west earlier this month. It said it was responsible for leaving an “anti-personnel device” containing a “pressure plate” in Ballyarnett in Derry on October 12. An attempt was made to lure the RUC/PSNI into the area after a hoax report of a burglary at a vacant house. The group said the attack was aborted after police failed to attend the scene and it then gave bomb warnings to media organisations. It also admitted planting a device in the Ballycolman estate in Strabane last week, saying it “was to be triggered by trip wire”. It later emerged that a separate hoax device was thrown at police to lure other officers into the area. It was subseqently picked up and moved by a member of the public. Both bomb attacks were widely condemned for endangering members of the community. In a statement, the republican group’s ‘Derry brigade’ claimed that “in both instances the RUC/PSNI used members of the local community to survey the scene before attending themselves”. “This tactic by the RUC/PSNI is very deliberate and we take this opportunity to advise all members of our community, including community workers, to refuse in any and all circumstances any requests from the RUC/PSNI or local politicians to do the bidding of the RUC/PSNI in this or any other way. “We state categorically that any injury or death caused by the RUC/PSNI tactics will be solely their responsibility.” The group, which announced its formation in July 2012 after a merger between the Real IRA, Republican Action Against Drugs and Independent republican units in Mid-Ulster, added that it will target anyone who assists the RUC/PSNI. “The IRA remains willing and able to target and execute state agents, paid or not, and will continue to do so while the denial of self-determination continues.” Responding to the claim on Tuesday night, Superintendent John Magill insisted that those who “left the devices in residential areas should shoulder all responsibility for the danger they put all of the community in”. “Those who carried out these attacks showed callous disregard for the local community and the police officers who serve it. We are very fortunate that no-one was killed or seriously injured as both occurred in residential areas, living there at serious risk,” he said. “We are committed to providing a service across the North of Ireland despite the attempts of a small minority who attempt to kill officers serving their community who should be allowed to carry out their duties without the added pressure of misguided individuals intent on causing them harm.” Police also again appealed for information about the attacks. SDLP Foyle assembly member Colum Eastwood also said that while he would be critcal of police responses where appropriate, the “bottom line is that responsibility rests with the people who plant the bombs”. “In the Ballyarnett bomb, the device was left outside a house in an area filled with lots of children and we are lucky no-one was killed,” he said. “The idea that bombs are left near children is just madness and all responsibility lies with those who plant the bombs.”
With many thanks to: Connla Young, The Irish News, for the origional story.