DETECTIVES from the PSNI’s Paramilitary Crime Task Force have arrested two men and seized two suspected firearms, a telescopic sight and suspected ammunition.

It follows two proactive searches in the Turf Lodge area of West Belfast last night, Thursday, August 1, as part of an ongoing investigation into West Belfast INLA.

Detective Chief Inspector Cummings said “Following a search of a house in the Turf Lodge area, two suspected firearms, a telescopic sight and suspected ammunition were seized.

“A further search was carried out at a second property and a 48 year old man was arrested under the Terrorism Act.

“A number of items were also seized for further examination.

“The suspect was taken to Musgrave Serious Crime Suite where he remains in custody being questioned by detectives.

“A further arrest was made today in relation to the investigation.

“A 56 year old man was arrested at Musgrave Police Station and he also remains in custody at this time.

“We are committed to tackling and disrupting the criminality linked to paramilitarism, including  paramilitary style assaults.

“Paramilitaries claim to protect their communities but the reality is that they use fear and violence in a bid to exert control over their communities.

“Those involved should be under no illusion – we will seek to identify them, arrest them and place them before the courts.

“Many areas face challenges from organised criminal gangs with paramilitary connections.

“Those who are involved in this type of criminality do not represent the interests of the community.

“We will continue to target all paramilitary groups and disrupt their illegal activities which only serve to blight the communities they operate in.

“Information from members of the public is absolutely vital in tackling serious crime and I would appeal to anyone who has any information to call police on the non-emergency number 101.

“Alternatively, information can also be provided to the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111, which is 100% anonymous and gives people the power to speak up and stop crime.”

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