Anger after bomb left lying on busy Belfast street
A pipe-bomb planted on a north Belfast street close to homes and shops could have killed, politicians have said.
The device was discovered on a footpath at the junction of Rosapenna Street and Oldpark Road yesterday morning.
One young mother said she had driven past the device with her child moments before police arrived at the scene.
"I'd no idea there was a pipe-bomb there," she added. "You don't like to think what could have happened had it gone off."
The area was cordoned off and homes and businesses evacuated while Army bomb experts carried out a controlled explosion.
Sinn Fein MLA Gerry Kelly said those responsible would not succeed in dragging society back to the past. "There is no rationale for such actions, and the sooner those behind this incident realise that the better," he added.
"Whoever was behind this needs to realise that they do not have the support of the local community. They should stop these pointless actions immediately."
Policing Board member Jonathan Craig said the person responsible did not care about killing or injuring innocent people.
"This was a despicable and cowardly act," he said. "If this device had exploded it could have killed or seriously hurt anyone walking or driving by. We could have been talking about the death of a child."
DUP MLA William Humphrey said the perpetrators should be "taken off our streets and put behind bars". He added: "There are people who don't want to see Northern Ireland moving forward, who have an evil agenda. It needs to be rejected by society."
PUP councillor Julie Anne Corr said such violence had no place in Northern Ireland anymore. She said: "I unreservedly condemn attacks like this as it puts lives at risk in what is a very busy area."
Police believe the device is the latest attempt to injure officers in the area in recent months.
In May a substantial bomb targeting police officers was discovered at the Crumlin Road junction with Brompton Park.
The PSNI blamed dissident republicans for the bomb and said it could have caused "carnage".
And in April a device was fired at a Land Rover at Victoria Parade in the New Lodge area.
"An attempt to harm officers cannot be ruled out," a police source said.