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Man faces terrorism-related charges in Northern Ireland

STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Charges include possession of articles likely to be of use to terrorists
  • The man's arrest follows the discovery of firearms linked to dissident republican activity
  • Dissident republicans have made or attempted more than 30 attacks on national security targets

(CNN) -- A 54-year-old man faces terrorism-related charges in Northern Ireland following the discovery of firearms linked to dissident republican activity, police said.

The man, whose name has not been released, was arrested Friday, according to the Police Service of Northern Ireland.

He faces charges of possession of articles likely to be of use to terrorists; preparation of terrorist acts; possession of firearms with intent to endanger life; possession of firearms and ammunition in suspicious circumstances; possession of a prohibited weapon; and conversion of weapons not being the holder of a firearms dealer's certificate.

The man is expected to appear at a magistrate's court on Monday.

Jonathan Evans, director-general of Britain's MI5 intelligence service, said recently that there has been "a persistent rise in terrorist activity and ambition in Northern Ireland over the past three years," and he attributed the problem to Irish republican dissidents.

Northern Ireland was beset by Protestant-Catholic sectarian strife for decades until the Good Friday Agreement was forged in the late 1990s.

But this year, dissident republicans have made more than 30 attacks or attempted attacks on national security targets, compared with more than 20 all of last year.

CNN's Bharati Naik contributed to this report.