Bessbrook pipe bomb explosion ‘part of traveller feud’, locals claim

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Saturday, March 30th, 2013
Community, News

Police in Newry have confirmed they are investigating reports that a pipe bomb exploded in Bessbrook last night.

According to local sources, the explosion was part of an escalating traveller feud between warring families in the Bessbrook area with Newry-based travellers.

Last Summer, Sinn Fein Councillor Pat McGinn expressed his fear that a feud between traveller families may erupt after what he described as a series of ‘serious violent incidents’ in the Bessbrook area.

At around midnight yesterday evening reports began flooding in to the Newry Times news desk of a loud explosion in the Ardaveen Park area of Bessbrook.

Speaking to Newry Times, a PSNI spokesman said they received a phone call from a man shortly after 12:05am who reported a pipe bomb or similar device being thrown at a van in the area.

The PSNI spokesman continued, “The device caused minor damage and we are investigating a motive at the minute. Nobody was injured in the incident.”

SDLP MLA Dominic Bradley also condemned the attack and has appealed for anyone who saw or heard anything unusual to contact the PSNI.

The incident happened in Ardaveen Park, Bessbrook

Bradley said, “I condemn those responsible for the detonation of this pipe bomb at Ardaveen, a quiet residential area, last night.

“In doing this they showed scant regard for life and had the circumstances been different, someone could have been killed or seriously injured by this device.

“I don’t know what these people hope to achieve. The use of violence is wrong regardless of the context and I would appeal to anyone in the area who saw or heard anything unusual to get in touch with the police”.

Sinn Fein Councillor Turlough Murphy said that news of the pipe bomb attack on a home had once again sparked grave fears about the ongoing traveller feud in the area.

“What has happened has caused anxiety throughout the community,” Murphy insisted.

“Those engaged in this violence have shown no regard for people or property. They must be apprehended and face the full rigours of the law. Any information on this incident must be reported to the PSNI.”

More on this story:

McGinn fears ‘traveller feud’ after violent Bessbrook incidents


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