Belfast Telegraph

Tuesday 23 September 2014

Firearms 'link to Northern Ireland'

Guns and ammunition, thought to be linked to historical Northern Ireland terrorism, have been found by a dog walker on the Isle of Wight

Two firearms and two improvised incendiary explosives discovered hidden deep in a forest on the Isle of Wight may be linked to historical Northern Ireland terrorism, police said.

The items include ammunition and have been there for several years, the Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) said. They were uncovered by a walker with his dog in Parkhurst Forest near Newport.

A spokesman for the force said: "One line of inquiry is that they are linked to historical Northern Ireland-related terrorism."

They were found on August 24. The 395-hectare Forestry Commission-managed woodland is used for recreation and is a haven for wildlife. It is the second largest forest on the island.

The PSNI is assisting the South East Counter Terrorism Unit.

A spokeswoman for the South East Counter Terrorism Unit added: "It is clear from the initial examination of these items that they have been there for several years. It is an essential part of the investigation to ascertain how long the items have been there.

"It is possible that the items are linked to historic Northern Ireland-related terrorism and for this reason the South East Counter Terrorism Unit is now leading the investigation with support from officers of the Police Service of Northern Ireland's serious crime branch.

"Police would like to stress that there is no indication that the find relates to any current criminal activity."

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