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Northern Ireland police defuse huge bomb

By the CNN Wire Staff
Police officers carry the coffin of Constable Ronan Kerr on Wednesday in Beragh, Northern Ireland. Kerr was killed by a bomb.
Police officers carry the coffin of Constable Ronan Kerr on Wednesday in Beragh, Northern Ireland. Kerr was killed by a bomb.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Bomb was found in bin inside abandoned van
  • Authorities blame dissident republicans
  • Another bomb last week killed a police officer
RELATED TOPICS
  • Northern Ireland
  • Belfast
  • Omagh
  • Ireland

Belfast, Northern Ireland (CNN) -- Authorities in Northern Ireland on Saturday defused a bomb packed into a bin containing 500 pounds of homemade explosives, police said.

The bin was located in a van abandoned outside Newry, along the main roadway between Dublin and Belfast, said District Commander Alastair Robinson of the Police Service of Northern Ireland.

He blamed the foiled attack on dissident republicans who are accused of killing a police officer with a booby-trap bomb in Omagh on April 2.

Local politicians said the bomb uncovered Saturday could have unleashed a disaster on the scale of a 1998 attack in Omagh, where an 800-pound bomb killed 29 people.

Dissident republicans are those who want Northern Ireland to be Irish rather than British, and do not accept the 1998 peace deal that largely ended decades of violence in the region.

Journalist Peter Taggart contributed to this report.

 
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