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DISSIDENTS HIT 4 ARMY OFFICES; Parcel bombs are first mainland attack for 13 years.

Byline: TOM PETTIFOR and CHRIS HUGHES

PARCEL bombs were delivered to four Army offices yesterday in an apparent attack by dissident republicans.

It also emerged yesterday that three other suspected explosive devices have been received by the forces this week.

Two of the seven packages, which sources said were "crude but could have caused injury", were stamped with a Republic of Ireland postmark.

The rest were sent from locations across the UK. This is thought to be the first Republican attack on mainland Britain for 13 years.

David Cameron has chaired a Cobra emergencies committee meeting to discuss the parcels.

TERRORISM

A No10 spokeswoman said: "Seven suspect packages have been identified as containing small, crude, but potentially viable devices bearing the hallmarks of Northern Ireland-related terrorism.

"These have now been safely dealt with by the police and bomb disposal units.

"Guidance has been issued to staff at all military establishments and the Royal Mail, asking them to be extra vigilant and to look out for any suspect packages."

No group has claimed responsibility for the parcels, which are not believed to have caused any injury.

In October last year, Secretary Of State Theresa Villiers was targeted with a parcel bomb along with PSNI Chief Constable Matt Baggott and the Public Prosecution Service in Derry.

North Belfast DUP MP Nigel Dodds said: "Northern Ireland has turned a corner. We are moving forward and no one wants to go back to the bad old days. I trust the police and security services will be able to apprehend those behind this plot."

tom.pettifor@mirror.co.uk

CAPTION(S):

PROTECTION Officer in helmet in Brighton

BRIGHTON Emergency team in action yesterday after bomb found

OXFORD Police out in force during bomb scare at Army careers office

CANTERBURY Cordon is put up as probe begins into suspect package
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Publication:The Mirror (London, England)
Geographic Code:4EUUK
Date:Feb 14, 2014
Words:304
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