POLICE UNCOVER PETROL BOMB ‘FACTORY’ IN EAST BELFAST

The scene of the petrol bomb attack in Short Strand which left a four-year-old girl with minor injuries last week

The scene of the petrol bomb attack in Short Strand which left a four-year-old girl with minor injuries last week

DETECTIVES have arrested three people and seized equipment for making petrol bombs during an intelligence-led search in east Belfast.

The arrests and search operation followed petrol bomb attacks along the Short Strand interface.

During the planned raids, officers also uncovered a quantity of ammunition and fireworks in Tower Street.

Local police chiefs have hailed the arrests and the seizure of equipment as “significant”.

Said Chief Inspector Mark McEwan: “These seizures are significant and are a clear indication of our on going commitment to local communities to keep them safe.

“There has been an increase in tensions at the interface, following a number of incidents that have occurred in both communities in recent days.”

Four petrol bombs were thrown at an east Belfast interface on Monday night.

Police are investigating the attack which happened in the Bryson Street area of the Short Strand at around 10.30pm on Monday night.

No one was injured in the attack.

On Sunday night, five petrol bombs were thrown at Strand Walk on Sunday night.

Loyalist community leaders blamed “outsiders” coming into the area to try and stir up tensions.

Last week, talks were held set up by the Belfast Interface Project between both communities in an attempt to diffuse tensions in the area.

It came after a four-year-old child escaped serious injury after a petrol bomb was thrown over an interface wall into the Short Strand.

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