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Police 'foil dissident plot to kill Ian Paisley Jnr'

Police have foiled a dissident republican murder bid against Northern Ireland Assembly member Ian Paisley Jnr, he said today.

The 42-year-old son of former Stormont first minister the Rev Ian Paisley said officers contacted him to inform him of the thwarted attack by violent extremists opposed to the peace process.

The Democratic Unionist North Antrim representative said he was satisfied with the steps the police have now taken to enhance his security.

"They made me aware of a murder bid and I am satisfied they have been able to foil that by their actions," the married father of four said.

"I am very satisfied with the way the police have dealt with the situation."

Mr Paisley, a member of the Northern Ireland Policing Board, is the latest high profile politician to come under threat from dissidents.

Senior Sinn Fein representatives and Jim Allister, the leader of the hard-line Traditionalist Unionist Voice party, have also been warned abouts risks to their security.

Meanwhile, a number of security force members have had to leave their homes after police advised them they could be potential targets for the extremists.

The ex-junior minister in the Stormont Executive said he was not going to allow the threat to sidetrack him from his work in the Assembly.

"It's one of those things you have to deal with but it won't deter me in any way," he said.

A Police Service of Northern Ireland spokeswoman said the service did not comment on the security of individuals.

She said: "However, if we receive information that a person's life may be at risk, we will inform them accordingly. We never ignore anything which may put an individual at risk."

Northern Ireland Policing Board chairman Barry Gilligan condemned the threat against the board member.

He said: "Secretary Clinton sent a very clear message that those who would try to disrupt the peace of people going about their daily lives are 'out of step and out of time'.

"Those behind the threat to Ian and recent threats made to other public representatives and police officers have absolutely nothing positive to offer and their actions must be condemned."

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