Northern Ireland

200 homes evacuated in Oldpark security alert

A security alert in the Oldpark area of north Belfast is expected to continue into Wednesday.

Police said the alert followed a claim that a device had been abandoned in the area. It is causing major disruption.

Parts of the Oldpark Road and Hillview Road have been closed. Around 200 homes are being evacuated, with facilities being provided at Ardoyne Community Centre.

Police said nothing suspicious had been found at this stage.

BBC NI reporter Kevin Sharkey said there was a "major security operation" in place.

He said a call had been logged with the Samaritans on Monday night saying a device was left in the area.

"Police are trying to find out if that is the case," he added.

"Police are being very cautious, their big fear is that if they move too quickly there could be a trap of some kind.

"They have indicated that it will be into tomorrow before they make major progress."

The Oldpark Road has been closed between Manor Street and Oldpark Avenue.

Rosapenna Street is closed from the Roseleigh Street junction.

Police said they were "mindful of the disruption" the alert was causing to people.

"Police must protect the community and every decision we take is for the welfare of the community - however the disruption is caused by those who make these claims and cause such distress in our community," a PSNI spokesperson said.

The alert follows reports of a shooting incident in the Oldpark area on Monday night.

A number of shots were heard at Glenview Street off the Oldpark Road.

Bullet casings were found at the scene near the Oldpark Road, but no injuries have been reported.

More on this story