Page last updated at 16:42 GMT, Tuesday, 10 March 2009

Dissidents 'behind city alert'

Irish Street
Irish Street is closed between Finn Gardens and Chapel Road

A Londonderry assembly member has blamed dissident republicans for a security alert in the city on Tuesday.

Residents on Bann Drive were evacuated for several hours after a suspicious object was discovered in a lay-by.

A controlled explosion was carried out, and the device was declared a "deliberate hoax". Part of Irish Street remains closed.

DUP MLA William Hay said he believed dissidents were "trying to unsettle communities".

"This certainly seems to be targeted at the interface area between Irish Street and Top of the Hill," he said.

"We had the murder of two soldiers at the weekend, we had the murder of the police officer last night, and I believe these dissident republicans are looking at how they can unsettle the ordinary communities on both sides."



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