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BBC NI chief security correspondent, Brian Rowan
The seizure was no accident - security forces had good intelligence which led to the find
 real 28k

Monday, 13 November, 2000, 17:44 GMT
Mortar find linked to Real IRA
The van was examined by army experts
The van was examined by army experts
Security sources have linked dissident republicans to a mortar device which was discovered in County Fermanagh at the weekend.

The Real IRA are believed to have been planning a mortar bomb attack on a security installation or RUC station.

Police said the device, known as a "barrack buster", contained 100 kilograms of home-made explosives.

It was intercepted in a van on Saturday following a well-planned operation involving the RUC and the army.

Four men are still being questioned by police in connection with the incident.

Peter Mandelson
Peter Mandelson: Praised RUC vigilence

Northern Ireland Secretary Peter Mandelson praised the security forces for their vigilance in intercepting the mortar bomb.

He added: "There are people who are determined to disrupt the peace process and destroy the Good Friday Agreement.

"Those people have got to be stopped."

Officers stopped a van containing the device at Teemore crossroads near Derrylin on the main Enniskillen to Dublin road at about 2130 GMT on Saturday.

Three cars were abandoned at the scene which is close to the border with the Irish Republic.

During the incident, police said two shots were fired by a police officer but no-one was injured.

False number plates and two-way radios were found in a follow-up search.

'Need for decommissioning'

Speaking on Sunday, RUC sub-divisional Commander, Superintendent Eddie Graham paid tribute to "the vigilance and bravery of the police officers involved".

Army technical officers spent Sunday morning examining the device at Derrylin.

Part of the village was cordoned off during Saturday night after police discovered the device.

Local Ulster Unionist assembly member Joan Carson said the discovery underlined the need for decommissioning of illegal weaponry.

She urged Sinn Fein to condemn the foiled attack.

"Are Sinn Fein going to face down the rejectionists in republicanism and get on with creating a peaceful society for everyone," she said.

Ken Maginnis:
Ken Maginnis: "A very seriously incident has been foiled"

Meanwhile, MP for Fermanagh and South Tyrone, Ulster Unionist Ken Maginnis, said the police had prevented a republican attack from causing multiple injuries and even death.

Mr Maginnis said: "A very seriously incident has been foiled.

"And one has to congratulate both the RUC and those cross-border forces who have co-operated with them.

"But it is not enough, quite bluntly.

"Whatever the security forces do, governments have now got to make a decision whether they are prepared to allow time and space for the Real IRA and other dissidents."

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See also:

12 Nov 00 | Northern Ireland
Police intercept mortar device
13 Sep 00 | Northern Ireland
Bomb attack on police station
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