Palace Barracks bomb: Explosion at MI5 headquarters in Northern Ireland

It is believed that dissident Republicans posted the bomb into the barracks where it exploded in a postal van

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The Independent Online

A bomb has exploded at the headquarters of MI5 in Northern Ireland.

The explosion took place inside Palace Barracks in Holywood, County Down yesterday morning. A device exploded inside a postal van, causing fire to spread to two other vehicles and garages within the security complex.

No one was injured in the incident.

It is believed that the attack was the work of dissident Republicans who oppose the peace process in Northern Ireland.

Recent months have seen a rise in terrorist activity in Northern Ireland, including bomb attacks on police officers in Lurgan, a bomb attack on a peace and reconciliation centre in Belfast and a gun seized in raids on homes in the border town of Dundalk.

Yesterday’s attack has been condemned by local politicians.

Conservative MP and Northern Ireland Secretary of State, Theresa Villiers, said: “Those responsible for sending this postal device showed a reckless disregard for the safety of postal workers and others doing their jobs. There is nothing to gain from this. Their actions are reckless and futile.”

Democratic Unionist MLA Alex Easton said: “I am deeply angry and concerned that there has been an attempt to kill somebody or soldiers inside Palace Barracks. This is a very worrying development and I would totally and utterly condemn it.

“I am just relieved no one was seriously injured or killed and I would appeal to anyone who has any information to bring it to police to put those involved behind bars where they belong.”

With additional reporting by PA