(Image by CarolineCarter @ blogspot.com)
DUBLIN – British Army experts defused a car bomb Saturday that had been abandoned on a rural roadside in Northern Ireland, a threat that is raising concerns about the region’s hosting of the G8 summit later this year.
The Police Service of Northern Ireland said the car contained a beer keg packed with about 60 kilograms (130 pounds) of homemade explosives. Metal kegs often have been used in the construction of Irish Republican Army-style bombs because they are easily portable and produce showers of shrapnel when detonated.
Police District Commander Pauline Shields said detectives suspected that an IRA splinter group planned to blast the nearby police base in the County Fermanagh border town of Lisnaskea, but may have been forced by a police patrol to abandon the bomb short of its target.
It would be the third foiled IRA attack on police installations this month, following two attempted mortar attacks on police stations in Northern Ireland’s two major cities, Londonderry on March 3 and Belfast on March 15.
“Those responsible (for the car bomb) have neither mandate nor legitimacy. They are totally out of touch with what the vast majority of people in Northern Ireland want,” said Cameron’s senior official in Northern Ireland, Secretary of State Theresa Villiers.