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Strabane security alert ends after ‘bid to kill police officers with roadside bomb with command wire’

A security alert in Strabane has ended after a “roadside bomb with a command wire” exploded at the side of the road which was “designed to kill ” officers.

The alert at on the Liskey Road and Townsend Street was sparked on Tuesday and ended on Friday afternoon. Three officers escaped injury after the device exploded while they were on patrol. Police said the device was a “roadside bomb with a command wire attached”. Chief Inspector Ivor Morton said: “This was a complex security operation involving what can only be described as a roadside bomb with a command wire attached. “This device was designed to kill or seriously injure officers serving the local community in Strabane, but it was also left in a built up area where it could quite easily have killed or maimed members of the public – showing a callous disregard for the safety of the local community.

It is extremely fortunate that we are not talking about the deaths of police officers or members of the public today.

The blame for this incident lies squarely on the reckless individuals who placed this device . The overwhelming majority of people in the community do not want this type of activity and we as a police service will continue to work to bring those responsible before the courts.” A 20-year-old man has been arrested in Newtownstewart in connection with the attack .

He was taken to Musgrave Serious Crime Suite in Belfast on Friday morning for questioning. Mr Morton thanked the public for their patience. He said: I would like to thank the local community for their patience and understanding during the course of this prolonged policing operation. “Our primary aim throughout has been community safety and we are committed to doing this by working with the community . The security operation caused significant disruption to the people of the area, but was necessary to allow for a careful examination of the scene in order to keep people safe.

Online Editors

Westminster terror attack: Lone wolves keep security services up at night

A carving knife . A car . An ideology twisted into madness itself and vanity . These are the ingredients that make for the perfect terrorist. Membership of a cell of like-minded monsters may have been a source of confidence and a source of inspiration. But it’s the lone wolves who keep the security services up at night. The Westminster attack on ordinary civilians and police guarding the Houses of Parliament could have been predicted and it was.

:: Witness: ‘I saw 8-10 people on the ground’1

But short of ending democracy, of closing access to the democratic process and its trappings, short of delivering strategic effect to lunatics and death cult members, by shutting off the mother of parliaments off from the world, very little more could be done to protect the precinct. Not, that is, unless the United Kingdom turned itself into something resembling the so-called Islamic State or at the very least a nation so preoccupied with its own security that it has lost touch with what it was that was worth protecting. This is both the physical vulnerability and the philosophical strength that extremists so wish to attack. The latest London atrocity is an attempt to repeat the Nice mass murder-by-truck committed last year in which 86 people were killed watching Bastille Day celebrations in Nice. :: First picture of terror attack suspect2

It has fallen on the anniversary of last year’s Brussels attacks too. The Nice attack was echoed in the December Christmas market attacks in Berlin . None of them were planned by a terrorist cell following orders from Raqqa, the capital of the so-called Islamic State. That would have meant that they were vulnerable to penetration and exposure. :: Live updates on attack3

IS and other groups have long understood that all that is required is to find, or make, a fanatic and give them a few basic hints over the internet and the world’s attention will be focused on the bloody outcome.

We’ve seen it in London before with the murder of Lee Rigby in Woolwich . Two semi-deranged wannabe jihadists with egos in inverse proportions to their understanding of Islam can cause mayhem. But it is worth remembering that these attacks are dramatic but they are tactical assaults . They do not result in strategic change. Power will still come on, the wheels of commerce and industry will turn and the United Kingdom will not shudder under the impact of a fanatic with a car. :: Witness: ‘A guy ran past me and stabbed cop with big knife’4

Not, that is, unless the very democracy that terrorists so hate – because, in the end it produces happiness, freedom and prosperity they cannot comprehend – is undermined. And that can only be done by an over-reaction to horrific events.

This is not the clash of civilisations that the terrorists want us to believe it is.

It is, rather, a sign of vicious weakness among the misguided losers who as homegrown fanatics blame the societies that sustain them for their own humiliations.

References

  1. ^ Witness: ‘I saw 8-10 people on the ground’ (news.sky.com)
  2. ^ First picture of terror attack suspect (news.sky.com)
  3. ^ :: Live updates on attack (news.sky.com)
  4. ^ Witness: ‘A guy ran past me and stabbed cop with big knife’ (news.sky.com)

Grizz the airport security dog shot after escape

An airport security dog has been shot dead by police in New Zealand after it escaped from its handler, causing flight delays. Grizz, a trainee explosives detector dog, was being loaded into a van by his handler in the public area at Auckland Airport at around 4.30am on Friday local time. It is not clear what spooked the 10-month-old bearded collie/German short haired pointer cross but he ran off and managed to get into the airport’s secure area when a gate opened to let a truck through. Aviation Security Service (Avsec) spokesman Mike Richards told Sky News that off duty dog handlers were called in to help search for Grizz.

“The fact that the incident took place very early in the morning did not help as it was pitch black for the first two hours and he could not be found,” he said. Grizz had been six months away from graduating but he did not have a permanent handler, which meant he was “less responsive” to those searching for him. Mr Richards added: “When he was located he would not let anyone near him and kept sprinting across the runways.

“We tried everything – food, toys, other dogs, but nothing would work. “The area is too vast and too open to try and use mobile fencing.” Meanwhile, 16 flights were delayed. Auckland Airport decided to have police shoot Grizz, according to Inspector Tracy Phillips of Counties and Manukau District Police.

She added: “This is not an outcome which anyone wanted, and police were only asked to be involved as a last resort.” Airport spokeswoman Lisa Mulitalo told the New Zealand Herald: “The dog was clearly distressed and wouldn’t let anyone near it so the decision was made to shoot the dog.” Mr Richards said that Grizz’s handler at the time and his colleagues were “naturally quite shaken but understand the reasons for the decision”.

Each dog like Grizz costs $100,000 ( 56,500) to train, he added. Among those who criticised the decision to shoot Grizz was popular TVNZ breakfast show host Hilary Barry, who said: “They’ve got to have tranquiliser guns, surely. “They shot the dog dead.

“I don’t care if your plane is delayed, they don’t need to shoot the dog.”

New Zealand news websites also ran polls which showed that the majority of those voting thought Grizz should not have been killed.