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Violence - Chronology of 'Pipe-Bomb' Attacks



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Text and Research: Michele Gassman
Material is added to this site on a regular basis - information on this page may change

Chronology of 'Pipe-Bomb' Attacks

Pipe-bomb Attacks
July 1997 to 13 February 2001

The following is a chronological listing of pipe-bomb attacks between July 1997 and 13 February 2001. The list covers most of the incidents of this type of attack, however it should not be considered as comprehensive. The list was compiled by Michele Gassman (then an intern working on the CAIN website) mainly from newspaper accounts of incidents involving pipe-bombs.

Almost all the pipe-bomb attacks have been attributed to Loyalist paramilitaries. Almost all the attacks were against Catholics. Initially the attacks were claimed by 'dissident' Loyalist groups the Red Hand Defenders (RHD) and the Orange Volunteers (OV). Later attacks were blamed on the 'mainstream' Loyalist group the Ulster Defence Association (UDA). Police also uncovered evidence that the Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF) had stores of explosives and component parts for making pipe-bombs.

In recent years a number of websites in Northern Ireland have documented sectarian attacks. So, for example, the Pat Finucane Centre website lists sectarian attacks {external_link}. Certain Loyalist sites have also record lists of attacks on Protestants (the Web link to one such site no longer works - June 2012).


1997

July 1997

Friday 25 July 1997
The body of a well-known Loyalist was found after an explosion on the outskirts of Belfast. The Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) discovered the body of the man, in his 30s, after reports of a blast at the river Lagan towpath near the Seymour Hill estate in Dunmurry on the southern edge of the city just before 5.00pm. The man was reported to have strong Loyalist connections and is thought to have died while handling an explosive device, possibly a pipe-bomb.


1998

May 1998

Tuesday 19 May 1998
A pipe-bomb contained in a parcel was delivered to the Dublin Tourist offices in St Andrew's Street, Dublin, Republic of Ireland. The device was spotted and defused. An unknown Loyalist paramilitary group was responsible for the attack.

July 1998

Saturday 11 July 1998
A pipe-bomb was discovered at a house in Blackthorn Park.


1999

January 1999

Tuesday 19 January 1999
A man was injured in the arm and leg by pipe-bomb during an attack in Loughinisland, County Down. The attack was carried out by the Orange Volunteers (OV) a Loyalist paramilitary group opposed to the Good Friday Agreement.

Tuesday 26 January 1999
A Catholic family who have lived on a mainly Protestant estate near Carrickfergus, County Antrim, for 42 years discovered a pipe-bomb beside their car. The Red Hand Defenders (RHD), a Loyalist paramilitary group opposed to the Good Friday Agreement, later claimed responsibility. The family said they were shocked at the attack.

Thursday 28 January 1999
A Catholic woman, and her four young children escaped injury when a pipe-bomb was thrown at their home at Beech Valley in Dungannon, County Tyrone around 1.00am. The Red Hand Defenders (RHD), a Loyalist paramilitary group opposed to the Good Friday Agreement, claimed responsibility.

February 1999

Tuesday 9 February 1999
A middle-aged man discovered an unexploded pipe-bomb outside a public house in Crumlin, County Antrim. The Loyalist paramilitary group the Orange Volunteers (OV) claimed they had targeted the bar.

Sunday 14 February 1999
A pipe-bomb was thrown at a house, Graymount, north Belfast.

Wednesday 24 February 1999
The Red Hand Defenders (RHD), a Loyalist paramilitary group, admitted a pipe-bomb attack on a house in Rosapenna Street near a peaceline in north Belfast. Residents living beside the peaceline expressed fears that Loyalist attacks were escalating. The device was discovered at around 8.45am in a back garden in Rosapenna Street off the Oldpark Road.

March 1999

Monday 1 March 1999
A chocolate box containing a bomb was left on the windowsill of a Catholic house in Coalisland, County Tyrone. The owner of the house said the bomb was in a large Roses tin and was first spotted as she returned home by taxi after 10.00pm. The attack was carried out by Loyalist paramilitaries. A pipe-bomb was found in Derriaghy, south of Belfast.

Tuesday 9 March 1999
There was a pipe-bomb attack in Portadown, County Armagh.

Wednesday 31 March 1999
A Catholic businessman from Dungannon, County Tyrone, discovered a pipe-bomb attached to his car. The device failed to explode. Another pipe-bomb was found in north Belfast. Army technical officers dealt with the device. The Loyalist paramilitary group the Red Hand Defenders (RHD) claimed responsibility for both bombs.

April 1999

Thursday 15 April 1999
Pipe-bombs were pushed through the letter boxes of two Catholic homes in Randalstown, County Antrim. Neither device exploded. UVF graffiti had appeared near one of the houses prior to the attack. The attacks were carried out by Loyalist paramilitaries.

Monday 19 April 1999
A pipe-bomb was found on the side of Catholic home in Serpentine Park, Belfast. A hoax device was found in Newtownabbey, Belfast. Several families had to be evacuated from their homes. The Loyalist paramilitary group the Red Hand Defenders (RHD) admitted responsibility.

Wednesday 28 April 1999
A pipe-bomb exploded in the car park of the Ramble Inn, situated on the main Antrim to Ballymena Road. Several cars damaged, but there were no injuries. The Loyalist paramilitary group the Orange Volunteers (OV) claimed responsibility for the attack.

May 1999

Wednesday 5 May 1999
A pipe-bomb, that had been packed with nails, blew a hole in the wall of a home of a Catholic couple living in a Loyalist area of south Belfast. Although the woman escaped unharmed, her husband received minor leg injuries. The attack was carried out by Loyalist paramilitaries.

Friday 28 May 1999
There was a pipe-bomb attack on the home of a Catholic family in Armagh. The device broke a window and caused minor damage to the house; the family escaped unharmed. The attacked was carried out by Loyalist paramilitaries.

June 1999

Saturday 5 June 1999
Elizabeth O'Neill Killed

Elizabeth O'Neill (59) was killed when Loyalist paramilitaries carried out a pipe-bomb attack on her home in the Corcrain estate in Portadown, County Armagh. Mrs O'Neill was a Protestant who was married to a Catholic. The bomb was thrown through the window of the O'Neill home and it is believed that Mrs O'Neill was killed as she tried to carry it out of the house. David Trimble, then leader of the Ulster Unionist Party (UUP), cancelled a planned trip to Israel because of the killing and described it as an attempt to derail efforts to resolve the Drumcree parade crisis. ['Mixed-marriage' (or 'cross-community' / 'mixed religion') couples had been targeted by paramilitaries since the beginning of the conflict. On 8 June 1999 the Loyalist Volunteer Force (LVF) denied responsibility for the pipe-bomb attack.]
A blast bomb exploded in another Catholic home in Westland Road, Portadown. A woman was inside with her 10-month-old baby and sister, aged 17. No one is injured. A pipe-bomb was made safe after it was discovered at a house in the Catholic Short Strand area of east Belfast. Several families were evacuated from their homes in Twinbrook, west Belfast while the Army dealt with two pipe-bombs. According to residents in the Acacia Avenue flats the devices had been lying for several hours in an area where children play before being discovered just before lunchtime. One of the residents stated that: "I heard them hit just beneath my window at 2.30am but I thought it was just somebody messing."' Pipe-bombs were thrown at Catholic homes in Castlewellan, County Down and in East Belfast. All the attacks were carried out by Loyalist paramilitaries.

Monday 7 June 1999
A pipe-bomb was found at St. Mary’s primary school in Ballymena, County Antrim. Nearly 120 children up to the age of 12 were evacuated from school grounds. The attack was carried out by Loyalist paramilitaries.

Wednesday 9 June 1999
Fourteen pipe-bombs, and some ammunition, were uncovered by the Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) in the Loyalist Mourneview housing estate in Lurgan, County Armagh.. The weapons were discovered at the rear of a house on the estate after information was received by the RUC from members of the public. The weapons belonged to Loyalist paramilitaries.

Monday 28 June 1999
A Catholic woman (45) and her six year old son escaped injury when there was a pipe-bomb attack on their south Belfast home. Police say bomb disposal experts called to the scene in Belfast’s Finaghy area found the remnants of a pipe-bomb which had been pushed through the letter box in the front door. The attack was carried out by Loyalist paramilitaries.

July 1999

Thursday 8 July 1999
Loyalists left a pipe-bomb outside the house of a Sinn Féin (SF) member in Ballycastle, County Antrim.

Tuesday 27 July 1999
A Catholic church in Moneymore, County Derry, was attacked with a pipe-bomb. No one was injured in the incident. A woman escaped injury after a bomb was left at her house in Larne, County Antrim. The woman heard a noise around midnight and discovered the device at the front of her house. The Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) moved the residents living on the street from their homes. Both attacks were carried out by Loyalist paramilitaries.

August 1999

Friday 5 August 1999
Two pipe-bombs were discovered by the Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) in a hedge in Glengormley, County Antrim. Police made the discovery at 2.45am during a search carried out at the junction between Elmfield Crescent and Elmfield Road in the town.

Tuesday 10 August 1999
Two pipe-bombs were recovered after Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) officers stopped a car acting suspiciously in the Rathenraw estate in Antrim shortly after midnight. Two men were arrested and the devices were defused by British Army (BA) officers.

Saturday 28 August 1999
The home of a Catholic man was attacked on Churchill Road, Larne, on Saturday morning when a pipe-bomb was left in his driveway. The man is the brother of the Social Democratic and Labour Party (SDLP) councillor in Larne, Danny O’Connor. Considerable damage was done to the house and the owner was treated for severe shock. Also in Larne, a pipe-bomb was thrown at the home of a Catholic family in Sallagh Park South. A couple and their four children were in the home at the time of the attack but were uninjured. The attacks were carried out by Loyalist paramilitaries.

Sunday 29 August 1999
A British army bomb disposal unit defused a pipe-bomb found near a Catholic church in County Antrim. The bomb had been left in the graveyard of St. Peter the Rock, on the Rock Road in Lisburn. The attack was carried out by Loyalist paramilitaries.

October 1999

Monday 4 October 1999
A pipe-bomb was thrown at a Catholic taxi driver as he travelled through the Peter’s Hill area of west Belfast. The bomb failed to explode. The Red Hand Defenders (RHD) later claimed responsibility for the attack.

Monday 11 October 1999
A pipe-bomb was thrown at the home of a Catholic family in the Twinbrook area of west Belfast. The device was hurled through the family’s living room window but failed to explode. A second pipe-bomb was found outside the house. A couple and their two-month old baby were in the house at the time but escaped injury. The attack was carried out by Loyalist paramilitaries.

Saturday 16 October - Sunday 17 October 1999
A number of homes were evacuated in the Cliftondene Crescent area of north Belfast as part of a security alert. A pipe-bomb was later found and made safe.

Tuesday 26 October 1999
Two men were arrested near Dungannon, County Tyrone, after the Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) discovered explosives in their van. Army technical experts then carried out a controlled explosion on the vehicle. The men are thought to be involved with dissident Loyalists; the van contained a pipe-bomb and two hand grenades.

November 1999

Tuesday 2 November 1999
Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) detectives found a number of pipe-bombs hidden in a hedgerow while conducting a search of the Loyalist Mourneview area of Lurgan, County Armagh.

Wednesday 10 November 1999
A pipe-bomb with a jar of nails attached to it was discovered on the windowsill of a house in Dromara Street, off the mainly Nationalist lower Ormeau Road in Belfast. One woman was in the house at the time. The device was later made safe by an Army bomb disposal team. The attack was carried out by Loyalist paramilitaries.

Sunday 14 November 1999
The home of a Catholic family in north Belfast was the target of a pipe-bomb attack. No one was injured in the attack. The man's daughter had been celebrating her twelfth birthday yesterday when the family returned home at about 6.30pm to find their house in Westland Road had been attacked. The attack was carried out by Loyalist paramilitaries.

Thursday 25 November 1999
A British Army bomb disposal unit carried out a controlled explosion on a pipe-bomb found in the village of Bushmills, County Antrim. The weapon was believed to have been produced by Loyalist paramilitaries.

December 1999

Wednesday 8 December 1999
Samuel McBratney (42), a 'computer expert' from Ballycraigy Ring, Larne, County Antrim, appeared before the high court in Belfast. McBratney was alleged to have helped Loyalist paramilitaries make pipe-bombs by downloading bomb-making information from the Internet. In addition to possessing incriminating computer records, the man faces charges of possessing pipe-bomb components and of having four devices with intent to endanger life. A crown lawyer said police carried out a planned search of McBratney’s home last May and seized computer records, books and literature about making bombs, parts of pipe-bombs and 97 cartridges, the propellant used in the making of pipe-bombs.


2000

January 2000

Friday 7 January 2000
There was a pipe-bomb attack on the home of a Catholic man at Andraid Close, in the mainly Loyalist Stiles Estate. The blast occurred shortly after 4.00am in the rear garden of the house, causing minor damage. No one was injured. The attack was carried out by Loyalist paramilitaries.

March 2000

Wednesday 31 March 2000
A Catholic businessman discovered a pipe-bomb attached to his car and removed the device and threw it into a nearby hedge in Dungannon. Meanwhile, a second pipe-bomb was discovered at the rear of a garden in Gray’s Lane off the Antrim Road in north Belfast. Both attacks were claimed by the Red Hand Defenders (RHD) a Loyalist paramilitary group.

May 2000

Wednesday 5 May 2000
A Catholic couple were forced to leave their home in a Loyalist area of south Belfast following a sectarian pipe-bomb attack. The husband sustained minor leg injuries after the device, which was packed with nails, blew a hole in the back door of the house at Broadway Parade and exploded into the kitchen. His wife who also was in the kitchen escaped unhurt. The attack was carried out by Loyalist paramilitaries.

June 2000

Thursday 8 June 2000
A Catholic mother and her 20 year old daughter escaped injury in a pipe-bomb attack on their home in Annalong, County Down. The two women were at home when the explosion rocked their terrace house shortly after 11.00pm. The attack was carried out by Loyalist paramilitaries.

July 2000

Saturday 15 July 2000
An 11 year old boy held an unexploded pipe-bomb for about an hour after it was found near a playground in Armagh. The boy was among a group of children who discovered the device beside a walkway on the Loyalist Ballinahone estate. The Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) said Loyalist paramilitaries could have hidden the bomb with the intention of using it that night or in the following days. It had been stored in a drainage hole in a wall beside the playground.

Wednesday 26 July 2000
A Loyalist pipe-bomb was found at an Ancient Order of Hibernians (AOH) hall in Galladuff, County Derry. The attack was carried out by Loyalist paramilitaries. Local people alleged that the bomb was intended to raise tensions in the run up to a Loyalist parade through nearby town of Maghera.

August 2000

Thursday 10 August 2000
A pipe-bomb was discovered in Magherafelt, County Derry, and was diffused by the British army. The attack was carried out by Loyalist paramilitaries. Loyalists also attacked 12 Catholic homes in Carrickhill and Ardoyne.

Sunday 13 August 2000
The Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) made safe a pipe-bomb on Drumlee Road in Ballymoney, County Antrim. The device had been pushed through the letterbox of a Catholic home. The attack was carried out by Loyalist paramilitaries.

Tuesday 15 August 2000
Johnny Adair, then a leader of the Ulster Freedom Fighters (UFF), a cover name (pseudonym) used by the Ulster Defence Association (UDA), claimed that Republicans were responsible for the pipe-bomb explosion that injured his hand. The claim was dismissed by security force personnel who said the pipe-bomb fragments recovered were from a type of device frequently used by Loyalists. [It was further alleged that Adair and some men with him were carrying the device in the car in which they were travelling when it exploded prematurely. The incident happened on Beechpark Street in the Protestant part of the Oldpark district.

Wednesday 16 August 2000
A pipe-bomb was found near the Glenshane Pass on the main road between Belfast and Derry.

Friday 18 August 2000
The Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) defused a pipe-bomb in Cullybackey near Ballymena, County Antrim. Police ruled out a sectarian motive for a pipe-bomb attack in which a woman in her 80's escaped injury. The device was found by a neighbour on the windowsill of the house at Lowtown Terrace in Cullybackey at about 7.30am. The police said the fuse of the bomb had been lit but it did not explode.

September 2000

Monday 11 September 2000
A family escaped uninjured after a pipe-bomb was thrown at their home on the Ballysally estate in Coleraine, County Derry. The attack was carried out by Loyalist paramilitaries.

Tuesday 12 September 2000
British army bomb disposal experts defused a pipe-bomb thrown through the window of a house in the upper Shankill on Sunday night. The house on the Ballygomartin Road was unoccupied when the device and a petrol bomb were thrown through the living room window at around 11.00pm. A pipe-bomb was thrown at the home of a Loyalist politician during an outbreak of violence on the Loyalist Shankill Road area of Belfast. Billy Hutchinson, Progressive Unionist Party (PUP) Assemblyman, was at the scene of the attack when a device was thrown at his home in the Shankill area. Mr Hutchinson's wife and father-in-law had to be moved from the house and other nearby homes were evacuated.

Thursday 14 September 2000
A pipe-bomb exploded at a house in Coleraine, County Derry, although the two occupants were uninjured. The Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) said that the motive for the attack was unclear.

Thursday 21 September 2000
A 71 year old Protestant woman in Newtownabbey, County Antrim, escaped injury after she handled a pipe-bomb that had been put through her letterbox. A similar device was put through the letterbox of a house in north Belfast.

October 2000

Thursday 5 October 2000
Johnston Brown, then a Detective Sergeant in the Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC), survived an attempt on his life when a pipe-bomb and petrol canister were thrown at his County Antrim home. Brown had played an important role in securing the imprisonment in 1995 of Johnny Adair, then a leader of the Ulster Freedom Fighters (UFF), a cover name (pseudonym) used by the Ulster Defence Association (UDA).

Thursday 12 October 2000
There was a pipe-bomb attack on the home of a father-of-two in east Belfast. No-one was injured when the device exploded under the man’s car in Bathgate Drive. Army bomb disposal experts had sealed off the area following a telephone warning to the Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) at 8.30pm. It is understood the man and his teenage son were at home at the time of the attack.

Saturday 14 October 2000
A Catholic father-of-six and his two teenage sons all escaped uninjured when a bomb exploded in their car. The explosion happened shortly before 9.00pm at Blackstaff Way, off the Grosvenor Road, in west Belfast. The man said he was with his two sons, aged 17 and 18, for a driving lesson in the Kennedy Road Industrial Estate. He tried to adjust the driver's seat, with one of his sons sitting in it, when he found a jar containing liquid and a pipe. He said it started to "fizz" and the three of them immediately fled from the vehicle just seconds before the device exploded. The attack was carried out by Loyalist paramilitaries.

Thursday 26 October 2000
A pipe-bomb was discovered underneath an Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) officer's car close to the courthouse in Antrim. A fuse had been lit but had burned out without detonating the pipe-bomb. Loyalist paramilitaries were blamed for the attack on the officer who was a witness in a Northern Ireland arms trial.

November 2000

Wednesday 15 November 2000
Ten homes had to be evacuated after a pipe-bomb was discovered outside a house in Glendun Close in Portrush, County Antrim, following a telephone warning. The Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) said they had not established a motive for the attack but added they did not believe it was sectarian. British Army (BA) explosives experts defused the device.

Saturday 25 November 2000
A pipe-bomb was defused after it had been left at a side entrance to a Catholic-owned public house in Coleraine. The attack was carried out by Loyalist paramilitaries.

December 2000

Sunday 3 December 2000
A Catholic couple and their 12 year old daughter escaped injury after a pipe-bomb was thrown at their home in Harper's Hill, Coleraine, County Antrim. A Catholic man and his two sons escaped injury after a pipe-bomb was thrown at their house on the Old Glenarm Road in Larne, County Antrim. Both attacks were carried out by Loyalist paramilitaries.

Wednesday 6 December 2000
Several families were evacuated from their homes in the Ballymoney area when a pipe-bomb was discovered on the windowsill of a house. The occupant of the house was not at home at the time of the incident.

Thursday 7 December 2000
There were two pipe-bomb attacks on the homes of Catholic families in Coleraine, County Derry. As a result of these attacks, and earlier ones, the Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) requested the deployment of British Army (BA) patrols in the town. A 30 year old man was alone in the kitchen of his home on Lilic Avenue when a pipe-bomb exploded in the back garden after bouncing off the kitchen window. The attacks were carried out by Loyalist paramilitaries.

Tuesday 21 December 2000
A bomb was thrown at a house in Hillview Road, Carrickfergus, County Antrim, around 12.35am while a couple and their two children were asleep. A window was broken, and there was damage to the front door and porch. There were no injuries.


2001

January 2001

Tuesday 2 January 2001
Several families were moved from their homes in north Belfast after two pipe-bombs were found. The devices were discovered near Saint Matthew's Church of Ireland church on Cambrai Street.

Thursday 4 January 2001
A Catholic family were forced to leave their home following a pipe-bomb attack and gun attack. Although the family was not at their Norwood Court home at the time of the attack, they were contacted by a neighbour and returned to find the house sealed off by police. A window was broken when a pipe-bomb exploded in the front garden while one bullet lodged in the window frame and a second was found on the living room floor. The attack was carried out by Loyalist paramilitaries.

Sunday 7 January 2001
There were pipe-bomb attacks on two families in Ballymena, County Antrim. It is understood that 11 people, including six children, escaped injury in the two attacks which took place within an hour of each other during the evening. In the first incident, a pipe-bomb was thrown through the living room window of a house on Ballymena’s Cushendall Road at 8.30pm. At around 9.20pm a pipe-bomb was thrown at a house in Clonavon Road near Ballymena town centre. Three adults and three children in the house escaped injury. The attacks were carried out by Loyalist paramilitaries.

Tuesday 9 January 2001
There was a pipe-bomb attack on the home of a Catholic family in Larne. The device was thrown through the front window of the house but only partially exploded. A mother and her son were in the living room at the time but the two escaped uninjured. The Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) described the incident as attempted murder. The attack was carried out by Loyalist paramilitaries.

Thursday 11 January 2001
A father-of four was injured when a bomb was thrown through a rear window and partially exploded on the floor of his Larne home. His children, three girls and a boy aged between 11 and 21, were upstairs and asleep at the time.
There was a pipe-bomb attack on the constituency office of Alban Maginness, then SDLP Assembly member. The office is on the Antrim Road in Belfast. Four members of a scout group were meeting upstairs in the building near Duncairn Gardens, on an interface between the Protestant and Catholic communities, when the attack happened. Two men had placed the device inside the front door of the building and it exploded at 9.00pm. .Maginness blamed the Ulster Defence Association (UDA) for the attack.

Friday 12 January 2001
A pipe-bomb was thrown at a house at Lettercreeve in the Ballee area of Ballymena. The device bounced off a window and landed in the garden. The family in the house at the time escaped injury. There was also a pipe-bomb attack on a public house in Ahoghill, County Antrim. British Army (BA) technical officers were called to deal with a device that had been left on a windowsill of the pub in the Diamond area. The bar was used by both sides of the community and there was some doubt about the motive for the attack. A 16 year old boy from Kilrea, County Derry, picked up a pipe-bomb that had been left at his family home before realising what it was. His mother said she was baffled as to why her family had been targeted.

Tuesday 16 January 2001
There was a pipe-bomb attack on the home of a Catholic family in Coleraine, County Derry. A couple and their two children, aged seven and 13, were in the house at the Heights in Coleraine when the device exploded just after midnight. The attack was carried out by Loyalist paramilitaries. British Army (BA) bomb disposal experts defused a pipe-bomb at the north Belfast home of the brother of Ronnie Flanagan, then Chief Constable of the Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC). Loyalists paramilitaries were believed to be responsible for leaving the device in the front garden of the house on the Cavehill Road. No-one was in the house at the time.

Wednesday 17 January 2001
A pipe-bomb was thrown at a Catholic-owned public house in Antrim at about 8.30pm. The Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) said that they were treating the attack as sectarian. Police said that a man wearing a hooded top attempted to throw the device through a window. It failed to explode, and was taken away for examination. No-one was injured. In Ballymoney, County Antrim, a Catholic family targeted in a pipe-bomb attack have said they believed the motive was sectarian. The pipe-bomb was discovered in the garden of their house after a telephoned warning. Both attacks were carried out by Loyalist paramilitaries.

Tuesday 23 January 2001
A 70 year old man carried a pipe-bomb out of his home in Garvagh, County Derry, after it was thrown through a window and landed at his feet about 1.00am. Not realising what it was, he lifted it and took it outside. His 60 year old neighbour, who lives alone, had been asleep when a similar device was hurled through her window. The householders, both Protestant, said they had no idea why their homes had been targeted. The attacks were not thought to have been sectarian.

Wednesday 24 January 2001
Five members of a Catholic family - including a six year old girl - escaped injury when a pipe-bomb exploded in the living room of their home shortly before 1.00am. The device caused extensive damage to the interior of the terraced house and blew in all the windows downstairs. The attack was carried out by Loyalist paramilitaries.

Thursday 25 January 2001
Six 'improvised bombs' were found on the roof of a school in a Loyalist area of east Belfast. More than 160 pupils and staff had to be evacuated while British Army (BA) bomb disposal officers dealt with the devices. There was speculation that the devices were being stored prior to use on Catholics homes in the nearby Nationalist Short Strand area.

Friday 26 January 2001
There was a pipe-bomb attack in Ballymoney. It took place in the same housing estate where the Quinn children were killed on 12 July 1998. The Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) said it could not rule out a sectarian motive for the attack. There were pipe-bomb attacks on the homes of two Catholic families in the Waterside area of Derry. The two families were related. [Only one of the devices was found at the time, the remains of the second device was discovered on Sunday 28 January 2001.] The attacks were carried out by Loyalist paramilitaries.

Monday 29 January 2001
Six members of one family have escaped injury after a pipe-bomb was left in their refuse bin. The device was uncovered just after midnight at the rear of a house in a predominantly Nationalist estate in Greencastle. The father of the family was packing their bin when he felt an object between some newspapers. The attack was carried out by Loyalist paramilitaries. A Catholic couple escaped injury when a pipe-bomb was thrown through the living room window of their home in Coleraine, County Derry shortly before midnight. Just over an hour earlier the home of a Catholic mother-of-two was targeted in the Harpurs Hill area of Coleraine. The woman was in her kitchen when a pipe-bomb was thrown through the window. It landed on the floor but failed to explode. The Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) said that both attacks were sectarian. The attacks were carried out by Loyalist paramilitaries.

Wednesday 31 January 2001
A Catholic worker at the Wishing Well Family Centre on the predominantly Protestant Alliance Road, Belfast, escaped injury when a pipe-bomb was hurled through her car window. The attack was carried out by Loyalist paramilitaries. At around the same time the RUC received two bomb warnings in the nearby Nationalist Ardoyne area,

Thursday 1 February 2001
[Five men were last night being questioned by anti-terrorist police in London after armed officers raided a suspected bomb factory in a quiet London suburb and then swooped on two other houses. Parts that may have been intended to make pipe-bombs were seized in the dawn raid in Ealing, west London, where the men were arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to cause explosions. In the first raid, at 7.30am, anti-terrorist branch detectives and officers from the firearms unit of the Metropolitan Police raided a ground-floor flat in Ealing. The second raid, at 3.30pm at a nearby house, was accompanied by a search of a nearby field. In the Southend raid, also at 3.30pm, about 50 police, some armed, descended on a house. No-one was arrested at the house but police said they had earlier arrested a man, since released without charge.]
Two pipe-bomb attacks on Catholic homes in Ballynahinch were condemned as a "blatant attempt at murder". A family of six was asleep in Loughside Drive when the first device exploded shortly after 2.00am, smashing a window. Around 10 minutes later a second device went off two doors away, near where neighbours had walked past to investigate the first blast. No-one was injured. The attacks were carried out by Loyalist paramilitaries.

Friday 2 February 2001
Components for 11 pipe-bombs were uncovered in Larne, County Antrim, following a planned search of derelict houses in the predominantly Protestant Antiville estate. The discovery was described as a "manufacturing base" in the town that was the scene of numerous sectarian attacks in previous months.

Saturday 3 February 2001
There was a pipe-bomb attack on a public house in the village of Whitehead, County Antrim. Customers escaped injury after the device failed to explode when it was thrown through a window. A pipe-bomb explosion in north Belfast came close to killing an entire family. Two parents and their three children escaped around midnight when a fire caused by the explosion gutted their house in the New Lodge area of north Belfast. The attack was carried out by Loyalist paramilitaries.

Sunday 4 February 2001
The Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) described a pipe-bomb used in an attack in Newcastle, County Down, in which a couple were injured, as a "relatively sophisticated device". The 24 year old woman and 25 year old man sustained minor leg injuries after they lifted the device from the top of their car. The police said a 13 year old boy also suffered a minor cut to his arm as he was walking past when the device exploded. A north Belfast family escaped injury when a pipe-bomb was thrown through the window of their home. The family fled from their home in the New Lodge area as it caught fire. The RUC said they were treating the attack as attempted murder.

Monday 5 February 2001
There was a pipe-bomb attack on a Catholic family in Ardoyne, north Belfast. The device failed to explode and was found in a plant pot at the base of the front living room window. Two adults and three children, aged one to 15, were uninjured in the incident. The man, a former republican prisoner, said he received a warning from the Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) on Friday night that he was being targeted by the Red Hand Defenders (RHD). The man discovered the device at 8.45am when he was preparing to take his children to school. There was a pipe-bomb attack on a Cathoic family in north Belfast. The father said he was sitting watching television in the house shortly after midnight when he heard two men talking outside. He said one of the men smashed the window and the other threw something into the front room. He and his family escaped injury when a fire-ball tore through the house and gutted the building. Both attacks were carried out by Loyalist paramilitaries.

Wednesday 7 February 2001
There was a pipe-bomb attack on the home of a Catholic family in the mainly Protestant Fountain estate in Derry. A couple and their children escaped injury when a device was left at their home in the early hours of the morning. The device partially exploded causing minor damage to an outer wall about 1.00am. The couple raised the alarm after discovering the six-inch device under a car. The attack was carried out by Loyalist paramilitaries. There were pipe-bomb attacks on Catholic homes in Limavady. One device exploded in the front garden of a house at Eventide Gardens, the other at a house on Edenmore Park. Patrick Vincent, whose home was targeted, said he did not know why his family had been singled out. The pipe-bomb exploded outside a bedroom of the house where he lives with his pregnant girlfriend. The attacks were carried out by Loyalist paramilitaries. A Loyalist, whose family escaped injury in a pipe-bomb attack on their home in Lurgan, County Armagh, claims the police knew it was going to happen. The family were at home when the bomb exploded at 12.40am. It caused scorch damage to the front door and also damaged the front of a neighbour's house. The man blamed the Loyalist Volunteer Force (LVF) for the attack and for two previous attempts on his life.

Saturday 10 February 2001
There was a pipe-bomb attack on a Catholic home in Derry. A couple and their two nieces, aged five and three, escaped injury when the device was thrown through the kitchen window of their home in the Waterside area. It exploded, causing minor damage to the house. The attack was carried out by Loyalist paramilitaries.

Sunday 11 February 2001
The Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) uncovered a 'bomb factory' in a block of flats in a Loyalist area of north Belfast. A significant amount of explosives and component parts for making pipe-bombs were seized during raids of three flats in Ross House in the Mount Vernon area. Police later linked the find to the Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF). The home of a Catholic family was damaged in a pipe-bomb attack in north Belfast. The device was thrown at the back of the house shortly before 1.30am. A number of windows were smashed and a door was damaged. The people inside the house, two men and a woman, escaped injury. The attack was carried out by Loyalist paramilitaries.

Tuesday 13 February 2001
British Army (BA) technical experts have made safe a pipe-bomb in Belfast that had been picked up by a 4 year old girl and carried into her house. The target of the attack was a Catholic family living on the Springfield Road in the west of the city. The young child found the device in the garden of her home. The attack was carried out by Loyalist paramilitaries.


CAIN contains information and source material on the conflict and politics in Northern Ireland.
CAIN is based within the University of Ulster.


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