GARDA detectives are investigating to see if there is a possible link between two arson attacks on Orange Halls in Co Donegal in recent weeks.
This week an arson gang who set fire to Convoy Orange Hall also tried to burn down the local Presbyterian Church.
The local Orange Hall was completely gutted after a door was forced in and some form of chemical used to set fire to the hall.
Gardai have also revealed that an attempt was made to set fire to the nearby Presbyterian Church.
Garda Superintendent Michael Finan has confirmed the fire, which broke out around 4.30am, was malicious.
“A side door was forced open and an accelerant was used to set fire to the hall so it was a malicious fire.
“We have also discovered that an attempt was also made to set a fire at the nearby Presbyterian Church after a back-door was forced in. Thankfully that fire did not catch hold,” he said.
The latest attack comes just three weeks after another Orange Hall in the village of Newtowncunningham was also gutted in an arson attack.
Supt Finan said a full investigation is being carried out to see if the two attacks are connected.
“We are certainly investigating if there is any links between the two fires and we will be exploring that,” he added.
Local Master of the Orange Lodge, Alan Laird, said the entire community of Convoy are just devastated by the attack.
“This is not just an attack on our community but it is an attack on the entire community of Convoy.
“I have spoken to people from all sides of the community this morning and they are just devastated and disgusted by the attack.
“I spoke to people in the street who were openly crying about what has happened here. It is just a terrible attack on society,” he said.
Gardai are carrying out a full forensic examination of the scene.
They are appealing to petrol station owners who may have sold small amounts of fuel in recent days.