Police scenePOLICE have lifted the security cordon in east Belfast after a second suspected pipe bomb was found.

The Lower Newtownards Road has now re-opened after Army Technical officers made safe the device found in Strand Walk.

It has been recovered for evidence and taken away for forensic examination.

The alert forced some elderly people from their pensioner’s dwellings during the evacuation.

However, an 80-year-old woman, who is terminally ill with cancer, had to stay at home as she could not be moved.

Army Technical Officers from Palace Barracks in Holywood were tasked to the scene for what was believed to have a pipe bomb type device.

The street was closed while the ATO examination continued.

Residents have now been allowed back into their homes and traffic in the area is returning to normal.

Earlier, police revealed that a pipe bomb failed to explode in east Belfast last night.

The device was lobbed into the back garden of a house at Strand Walk in the Short Strand district around 10.40 pm.

A number of homes in the area were evacuated during the alert.

Army Technical Officers (ATO) were tasked while police closed off streets around the area during the alert.

After ATO made the pipe bomb device safe, residents – many who are elderly and disabled – were allowed back into their homes at 3 am.

Detective Sergeant Sean Armstrong said: “The object was examined and declared a small viable explosive device which had failed to explode.

“The object was made safe and has been taken for forensic tests to be carried out.

“This device had the capacity to cause serious injury.

“The scene was closed at around 3am with residents allowed back to their homes,” added DS Armstrong.

Anyone with information about those who threw the pipe bomb device into the garden is asked to contact detectives on the 101 non-emergency number or through Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

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