New IRA suspected of attempted bomb attack on police officer and her daughter, 3

New IRA suspected of attempted bomb attack on police officer and her daughter, 3

THE NEW IRA are suspected of being behind an attempted bomb attack on a PSNI officer and her young daughter.

On Monday morning, 19 April, a Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) officer discovered a bomb had been planted beside her car close to her home in Ballyquin Road, Dungiven.

The device was investigated by the bomb squad and was found to be viable, with investigators determining that the bomb would have killed the young mother and her three-year-old child, as well as anybody nearby, had it gone off.

The PSNI have condemned the "sickening" attempted terrorist attack, with the bomb planted at the side of the car where the officer's toddler daughter sits, and say they suspect the New IRA of being behind the attack.

Speaking yesterday, Assistant Chief Constable Mark McEwan, Head of Crime Operations Branch, said the investigation is still "at an early stage" but is believed to be work of "violent terrorists", namely the New IRA.

"We assess this was a viable device with explosives attached to a container with flammable liquid. This was designed to cause a fireball which would have engulfed the victim’s car and anyone in it or anyone close by, or those calling to the house," he said.

"What is really distressing is the terrorists placed the bomb at the rear of the car directly at the point where the victim’s 3 year daughter sits. This demonstrates the complete and utter disregard for the life of a mother and her toddler, which simply beggars belief."

Assistant Chief Constable McEwan reflected on the Derry Court House blast in 2019 in which people narrowly escaped with their lives, and of the murder of journalist Lyra McKee almost two years ago to the day.

"It is clear," he said, "they are still intent on recklessly targeting honest, hard-working members of our community with no concern at all for who they harm or kill in the process."

He appealed to anyone with information regarding the attempted attack "or of nyone involved in dissident republican, or other violent or terrorist, activity to come forward and provide any information they have to the police."

"It is time for people to examine their own consciences and ask themselves whether they support attempting to kill a 3 year old child and her mother."

The PSNI are in particularly seeking information from anyone who was in the Ballyquin Road, Dungiven area between Sunday the 18th and Monday the 19th of April.

Anyone with information should call Terrorism Investigation Unit detectives on 101 quoting reference number 419 19/04/21, or sumbit a report online via this link.

Anyone wishing to remain anonymous can also contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or online via this link.