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Strabane security alert ends after 'bid to kill police officers with roadside bomb with command wire'

A security alert in Strabane has ended after a "roadside bomb with a command wire" exploded at the side of the road which was "designed to kill " officers.

The alert at on the Liskey Road and Townsend Street was sparked on Tuesday and ended on Friday afternoon.

Three officers escaped injury after the device exploded while they were on patrol.

Police said the device was a "roadside bomb with a command wire attached".

Chief Inspector Ivor Morton said: "This was a complex security operation involving what can only be described as a roadside bomb with a command wire attached.

"This device was designed to kill or seriously injure officers serving the local community in Strabane, but it was also left in a built up area where it could quite easily have killed or maimed members of the public - showing a callous disregard for the safety of the local community.

“It is extremely fortunate that we are not talking about the deaths of police officers or members of the public today.

“The blame for this incident lies squarely on the reckless individuals who placed this device. The overwhelming majority of people in the community do not want this type of activity and we as a police service will continue to work to bring those responsible before the courts."

A 20-year-old man has been arrested in Newtownstewart in connection with the attack. He was taken to Musgrave Serious Crime Suite in Belfast on Friday morning for questioning.

Mr Morton thanked the public for their patience.

He said: “I would like to thank the local community for their patience and understanding during the course of this prolonged policing operation.

"Our primary aim throughout has been community safety and we are committed to doing this by working with the community. The security operation caused significant disruption to the people of the area, but was necessary to allow for a careful examination of the scene in order to keep people safe.

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