‘Violent dissidents’ were responsible for an ‘elaborate hoax’ which led to a security alert at Allenhill Park in Lurgan yesterday (Sunday, February 12, police have said.
The security alert ended yesterday evening and residents evacuated as a result were able to return home.
On their social media page Craigavon PSNI said: “Our assessment at this stage is that violent dissidents are responsible. The same ones who time and time again show their commitment to disrupting the community they live in, ruining lives, and using violence and intimidation to inflict as much damage as they can on the good people of Lurgan.
“This device was an elaborate hoax, and was without doubt aimed at doing exactly what it did - cause annoyance, disruption, and fear to the community. It also meant the closure of a park, where families, children and dog walkers should have been enjoying their day. It meant forcing us to take the action we did to keep you safe.”
Police added: “We would like to thank those who were inconvenienced. It would be easy to get annoyed with us, as the ones on the ground, however, the messages and words of support we have had from people show us beyond doubt that the Lurgan public are not fooled by the dissidents scheming, and know exactly who is responsible for today’s upheaval.
“Our officers and ATO colleagues did a fine job today on the ground, and all this does is to strengthen our commitment to serve you, the public, and to keep you safe. Today, dissidents stole the normal service you deserve, putting on hold several crime prevention operations and taskings. It was just that though, briefly on hold. We are already back to business as usual. Patrolling, responding, keeping people safe.
“If you see anything suspicious you think may be related to dissident activity, call us on 101, or 999 in an emergency. Alternatively you can call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.
“Thank you again for your support,”
The alert was sparked on Sunday morning following the discovery of a suspicious object, a number of homes were evacuated during the alert.