The Observer leads today with this story.
Scotland Yard’s counter-terrorism section sent out an email about a new threat to businesses across London on Friday evening, following intelligence received from MI5 about an increase in activity from breakaway groups such as the Real IRA.
The chilling note, seen by The Observer, states: ‘Reporting indicates that dissident Irish republican terrorists are currently planning to mount attacks on the UK mainland.’
It goes on to explain that methods used by dissident groups in Northern Ireland could be transferred to Britain. These include ‘incendiary and improved explosive devices’ used in recent republican campaigns, ‘postal devices’ and ‘shooting attacks’. The police warning adds that hoax calls have also been made ‘to amplify the disruptive effect of such attacks’. The level of the threat is now said to be ‘substantial’, just one stage below the ‘severe general’ threat from al-Qaeda.
And using the new control orders on Irish people has not been ruled out. Worrying stuff indeed. I can only hope that whoever might be planning to attack the UK mainland think twice, the world is just a tad less tolerant of terrorism since September 11, and any attempt by the Provisionals to mount a terror campaign will like be counter productive – and end up throwing Sinn Fein back into the political wilderness, that’s if it can go any further into wilderness.