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Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 19 March 2019

UK police say 'IRA' claim responsibility for suspicious packages

The claim was delivered to a Northern Ireland news outlet, using a code word

Police secure a cordoned-off area at London's Waterloo Station near to where one of the suspicious packages were found. Reuters
Police secure a cordoned-off area at London's Waterloo Station near to where one of the suspicious packages were found. Reuters

London's Metropolitan Police said a group calling itself the IRA claimed responsibility for parcel bombs posted to three buildings in London and the University of Glasgow last week.

The claim was received by a news outlet in Northern Ireland, using a code word, the Metropolitan Police said.

"We are also aware that those claiming responsibility have indicated five devices were sent. At this time, only four devices have been recovered," the police said.

"Given the packages received last week bore similarities to devices sent in the past which were linked to dissident groups associated with Northern Ireland-related terrorism, officers were already looking at this as a line of enquiry.

"However, we continue to keep an open mind and enquiries continue," police said without specifically blaming the dissidents for the use of the devices.

Small letter bombs that were designed to cause fires were sent last week to Waterloo rail station in central London, offices at Heathrow and London City Airports, and the University of Glasgow.

Airport operations were not impacted.

One of the devices partially burned when opened and caused a small fire.

Police said they have given extensive devices to businesses and the armed forces to protect against the further use of letter bombs.

A link to Ireland had been suspected because Irish stamps were used on the envelopes.

Updated: March 12, 2019 04:46 PM

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