Woman and children escape injury after 'reckless' pipe bomb attack in Co Armagh
Police said it was "extremely fortunate" no-one was seriously injured.
A woman and a number of children have escaped injury after a pipe bomb attack in Co Armagh last night.
Police were called to the Enniskeen area of Craigavon at around 11.45pm on Saturday following a report of a suspicious object.
The area was cordoned off and a number of houses were evacuated while Army bomb experts worked at the scene.
Security alert in Enniskeen area of Craigavon last night has ended. ATO attended.2 suspicious objects found at the scene have been declared viable devices.Residents have been allowed to return home.Thank you to those affected for your patience as we worked to make the scene safe.— PSNI (@PoliceServiceNI) February 17, 2019
Detective Sergeant Foley said: "Police received a report at 11:45pm last night of a loud bang in the area sometime between 11:20pm and 11:30pm.
"Police attended and ATO were tasked to the scene when it was established that a device had detonated outside the house.
"A female and a number of young children in the house at the time were not injured, and no damage was caused to the property.
"When ATO were on scene, a second pipe-bomb device was discovered. Both devices have been declared as viable.
“The remnants of the device that exploded and the second device have been seized by police and taken away for further forensic examination.
"Residents who were evacuated as part of a public safety operation during the alert have now been allowed to return to their homes.
"I want to thank all those who were affected by the alert for their patience as we worked to make the scene safe. I appreciate the disruption this caused to residents who had to leave their homes, however, keeping people safe is our priority and we will not take any chances.
This was a reckless attack by those responsible, and we are extremely fortunate that we are not dealing with any serious injuries, or worse today. Detective Sergeant Foley
"Anyone could have picked up these potentially deadly devices, and those behind the attack have clearly no regard for the safety of the others.
"Our enquiries are at an early stage and I want to appeal to anyone who was in the area last night and saw any suspicious activity, or any suspicious vehicles in the area to get in touch with us on the non emergency number 101, quoting reference number 1611 of 16/02/19."
DUP Upper Bann MLA Carla Lockhart condemned those who left the devices.
She said: “I would utterly condemn those who left these devices in Enniskeen. It doesn’t matter what cause or reason they think they are advancing violence is not the way to do it.
"My thoughts are with the families who had to leave their home overnight especially on a Saturday night when people are relaxing after a hard week at work. Craigavon doesn’t need this and these families certainly don’t.
"I am concerned at this worrying trend of criminal activity. These devices were viable and could very well have caused serious injury or indeed death. I would ask anyone with information to come forward to the PSNI via the 101 service.”
Information can also be passed anonymously to independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800555111.