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Last Updated: Sunday, 30 January, 2005, 18:09 GMT
Incendiary attacks 'costing jobs'
Smouldering remains of Strabane shop
Remains of firebomb was found in shop
Those responsible for planting incendiary devices in shops in Strabane are putting people out of work, an SDLP assembly member has said.

Eugene McMenamin's comments follow the latest attack in which a viable device was found in a supermarket in the town.

Army bomb experts defused the device which was found in the premises on the Branch Road shortly before 0300 GMT on Sunday.

A number of items have been removed for examination.

Last Saturday, an agricultural supplies store in the town was destroyed by an incendiary device.

Mr McMenamin says the attacks are hurting the community.

"At a time when many people are doing their utmost in promoting our town there are those who are hell bent trying to destroy it," he said.

Dissident warning

"Last weekend we saw 20 jobs lost in an incendiary attack on a major store in Strabane. This weekend we could have seen up to 70 jobs lost with this latest incendiary attack.

"Thankfully the devices were discovered. But what on earth are those responsible trying to achieve? The only thing they will do is put many people out of work in an area were every job is very important."

Police have urged shop owners in the area to check their premises thoroughly both during trading hours and before they close for the day.

The latest attack follows a police warning that dissident republicans may be planning fire bomb attacks across the north west.

The police say businesses in Londonderry, Coleraine, Strabane and Ballymena should review their security.

They have also appealed to the public to be extra vigilant and to immediately report anything suspicious to the police.

Dissident republicans were linked to a spate of fire bombings which destroyed several stores across the province last month.

At least 16 devices were discovered in Lisburn, Newry, Antrim, Derry, Newtownabbey and Ballymena in the run-up to and throughout the Christmas period.


SEE ALSO:
Police warn of fire bomb attacks
26 Jan 05 |  Northern Ireland
Area to reopen after major fire
24 Jan 05 |  Northern Ireland
Incendiary defused in shop
29 Dec 04 |  Northern Ireland
Incendiary found in town store
23 Dec 04 |  Northern Ireland


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