People Before Profit blame UDA for Waterside pipe bomb attack

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The People Before Profit Alliance (PBPA) have accused loyalist paramilitaries of carrying out a pipe bomb attack that resulted in several families being evacuated from their homes in the Waterside on Monday.

People Before Profit spokesperson Davy McAuley said people living in the area had “no doubt” the UDA were responsible.

Ammunition Technical Officers (ATO) have confirmed that two suspicious objects discovered at Montgomery Close in the Rossdowney Road area at 1.30 p.m. on Monday were viable pipe bombs.

However, while describing those responsible as “criminals who showed absolutely no regard for the community by placing two potentially deadly devices in a built-up area”, PSNI Detective Inspector Lindsay Fisher did not elaborate any further on who was responsible.

But Mr. McAuley has claimed that loyalist paramilitaries, specifically the UDA, were behind the attack.

He said: “Those who left two viable pipe bombs in a residential area of the Waterside are despicable, faceless cowards. The people who live in Montgomery Close had their lives turned upside down by people whose actions they neither support nor ever want in their area.

“This incident is not the first in the area. Recently a Catholic man in Clooney had his house targeted by loyalist paramilitaries with an explosive device.

“A family were also intimidated from their home in near by Rossdowney Gardens.

“There is little doubt within the area who is responsible for this latest incident.”

Mr. McAuley said it was the UDA.

The pipe bomb attack has been roundly condemned by political and civil representatives across the board.

The DUP Chair of the Derry and Strabane Policing and Community Safety Partnership, Alderman Drew Thompson said: “These attacks have no place in our community. The attacks cannot be justified and are placing our residents and children at risk.

“The criminal gang that left these pipe bombs in a built up residential area have no concern for people living there and no matter what rationale is put forward these incidents have no place in our society.”

SDLP Waterside Councillor Martin Reilly said: “Those responsible for this alert have disrupted residents, families and the local community. This is an arterial routes in this part of the city.

“I would urge anyone with information to get in touch with the police or with Crimestoppers. We need to take back our communities from these people. That can only be done if local people volunteer information.”

Sinn Féin Waterside Councillor Christopher Jackson said: “Those responsible for leaving these pipe bombs in Montgomery Close should be condemned by everyone in our community.

“There is no rationale or justification for such actions and the sooner those behind this incident realise that the better.

“They are attempting to drag us back to the past but they will not succeed.

“Whoever was behind this incident needs to realise that they do not have the support of the local community and they should stop these pointless actions immediately.”

DI Fisher said: “The safety of the community is of paramount importance and we will not take any risks, however, I want to thank the local community for their patience and understanding during this operation as we worked to bring it to a conclusion.

“I am aware how frustrating this incident has been, and the inconvenience and disruption it has caused to the local community who have had their lives disrupted, including a number of residents who were evacuated from their homes.”

DI Fisher added: “I urge the public to remain vigilant. If anyone finds anything suspicious please do not touch it - phone the police immediately.”