Four still held over Derry rocket

The bomb was found in a car in the Creggan area of Londonderry The bomb was found in a car in the Creggan area of Londonderry

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Four men in their 40s are still being questioned by police after a home-made rocket was found in a car stopped in Londonderry on Thursday night.

The vehicle was stopped at Westway in Creggan. Three of the men were in the vehicle, the other was arrested nearby.

A senior police officer has said he has no doubt the rocket was to be used to try and kill his officers.

Chief Supt Stephen Martin said the device was of a type used extensively by insurgents in Iraq and Afghanistan.

"This a weapon which is used primarily to attack armoured vehicles and kill the occupants of those vehicles," Chief Supt Martin said.

"Unfortunately it has been used extensively in places such as Iraq and Afghanistan to deadly effect.

"So we are obviously concerned that there was one of these in the city last night, but delighted that we have been able to take it out of circulation before it was used for its deadly purpose."

Chief Supt Martin said three of the rockets, which he termed "explosively formed projectiles" had previously been seized in Northern Ireland recently, but this was the first in Derry.

"It would be my firm belief that this would have been used against police within the city here," he said.

"Clearly it is a worrying development, this is a device which is designed for one purpose and that's to kill."

He said the arrest operation had been "proactive" and was targeting dissident republican activity.

Some residents had to leave their homes while the Army dealt with the device.

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    Mitchel McLaughlin

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    They're on the first hole. Follow the scoreboard here

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    More detail on that cattle truck crash in Co Fermanagh from our reporter at the scene, Julian Fowler.

    Cattle crash
    16:16: Cattle put down after crash

    Ten cattle have been put down after the trailer they were in crashed near Derrylin, Co Fermanagh.

    Crashed cattle trailer

    Police and officials from the Department of Agriculture are at the scene.

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    Spring snow

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    A1 Crash

    Her injuries are not believed to be life threatening. Insp Leslie Badger said: "The A1 remains closed and we would ask motorists to be patient as we carry out our investigations into the collision."

    15:41: A1 northbound still closed: BBC NI Travel

    Police say that the A1 southbound from Dromore to Banbridge is in the process of being reopened but the northbound road stays closed after a fatal crash this morning.

    15:31: Harrington in front: BBC Sport NI

    Three-time major winner Padraig Harrington is eyeing up his first PGA Tour victory in 2008 - he leads the Honda Classic in Florida by one shot with three holes to play.

    Padraig Harrington

    You can follow the live scoreboard on the PGA Tour website.

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    AA Roadwatch tweets that a truck has jack-knifed on the M1 from Belfast to Dublin between junction five and junction four at Donabate.

    There is already serious disruption on the Belfast to Dublin road as the A1 is closed after a fatal crash this morning.

    15:09: New Stormont departments announced:

    First Minister Peter Robinson has formally announced the names of the nine new Stormont departments that will replace the current 12 in 2016.

    Stormont talks
    15:00: Power back on: Northern Ireland Electricity

    NIE say that 25,000 customers have had their power restored in the Ballymena area after a fault this morning.

    It says that three customers are still have no power because of a broken overhead line.

    14:50: Man dies in A1 crash:

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    Padraig Harrington

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    A1 crash

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    14:14: FIFA tribute to penalty inventor:

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    Team of the Week

    In his review of the weekend he says Ireland are playing "World Cup winning rugby", but that Wales are favourites for their game in just less than two weeks.

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    Spring snow

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    Martin McGuinness, Enda Kenny and Peter Robinson paid tribute to the late Brian Lenihan

    Martin McGuinness said: "I have yet to receive a satisfactory reply to the proposals or even a detailed response or discussion on how to proceed on this matter."

    13:41: Westlink delays:

    BBC NI Travel tweets:

    13:35: Churches call for donors:

    Catholic Archbishop Eamon Martin and Church of Ireland Archbishop Richard Clarke are launching a new 'Flesh and Blood Ireland' campaign to help increase the number of blood and organ donors.

    Donor card

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    Ireland Women's Rugby

    BBC Sport's Patrick Gearey looks at how the game has developed and what's next for the successful Irish team.

    13:17: SDLP backs Elliott's Bill:

    BBC News NI political correspondent Gareth Gordon tweets:


    Ulster Unionist MLA Tom Elliott plans to introduce legislation to prevent public facilities being named after people convicted of terror offences.

    13:10: Women's rugby world cup bid:

    The Irish Rugby Football Union has announced that it has submitted a bid to host the Women's Rugby World Cup in August 2017 at locations in Dublin and Belfast.

    A view of the redeveloped Ravenhill

    Irish Rugby intends to host the tournament pool stages at University College Dublin before moving to Belfast for semi-finals and finals at Queen's University Sport and the newly developed Kingspan Stadium.

    13:06: Fewer MLAs mooted:

    First Minister Peter Robinson tweets:

    MLA reductions
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    12:55: MP says businesses leaving east Belfast: Belfast Telegraph

    The Belfast Telegraph reports that East Belfast MP Naomi Long says business owners are leaving east Belfast to set up elsewhere because of the level of control loyalist paramilitaries have in the area.

    Outline of mural on gable wall

    Ms Long said that jobs and financial investment have been lost because a number of employers felt they had no other choice but to sell up.

    12:47: Departments streamlined:

    BBC News NI political editor Mark Devenport tweets:

    NI departments
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    Cookstown District Council tweeted a photo of the group handing over the letter to Peter Robinson and Martin McGuinness.

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    A1 delays

    The northbound lanes, where the two-car collision happened, remain closed.

    12:24: Footage of A1 crash: Conor Macauley BBC News NI

    Here's footage of the scene on the A1 at Banbridge where a two-vehicle crash has closed the road in both directions.

    A1 Crash
    12:21: Civil service redundancy scheme:

    BBC News NI political editor Mark Devenport tweets:

    Mark Devenport
    12:09: A1 crash:

    BBC News NI's @tvconormac is at the scene of a crash on A1 northbound at Dromore. The road is closed on both directions.

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    11:58: SA wary of Ireland: BBC Sport NI

    Former Ireland coach Adrian Birrell says South Africa are fully aware of the threat Ireland will pose in Tuesday's World Cup match in Canberra.

    Ed Joyce

    The 54-year-old was in charge of the Irish at the 2007 World Cup when they reached the Super Eight stage.

    11:47: Anything to declare? BBC Talkback

    On BBC Talkback today - should police officers have to declare if they are members of the Orange Order?


    We'll be talking to the DUP's Jonathan Craig, the SDLP's Dolores Kelly and Dr David Hume from the Orange Order. Let us know your views by tweeting @BBCTalkback and calling 08459555678.

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    There are long queues in both directions on the A1 after a crash between Banbridge and Dromore. There are diversions in place at Blackskull Road on the northbound route and through Dromore on the southbound.

    A1 lorries

    BBC News NI's Conor Macauley sends us this photo of lorries going back to Banbridge, unable to drive the northbound diversion route.

    11:24: Teenagers in illegal street parties: Belfast Telegraph

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    11:10: More snow forecast: Barra Best BBC News NI Weather Presenter

    BBC News NI weather presenter Barra Best tweets: More snow and ice expected in places on Monday night. A warning has been issued by @metoffice

    Snow warning
    11:00: Lorry overturned

    Carson Harte has sent us this picture of an overturned lorry on the Slievenaboley road in Dromara, County Down.

    Overturned lorry
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    Our colleagues at BBC Earth are running a live blog where they're searching for signs of spring. and asking people to send in their pictures to reflect the new season.


    After the snowy weather we've had across Northern Ireland this morning, it seems like our search for spring is going to continue for some time yet but if you do spot anything give them a shout.

    10:44: £13m contract for NI firm: Clodagh Rice BBC News NI

    Belfast building contractor Gilbert Ash has been awarded a £13m contract to refurbish and extend the National Army Museum in Chelsea.

    Gilbert Ash

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    10:40: A1 queues: Conor Macauley BBC News NI

    BBC News NI's Conor Macauley tweets: Long queues A1 northbound after bad crash between Banbridge and Dromore.

    Traffic queues
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    BBC News NI reporter Keiron Tourish has sent us some snaps of the snowfall near Londonderry.

    Snow in Derry

    You can send us your pictures by emailing

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    Fleadh crowds in Waterloo Street
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    Snow in Newtownabbey
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    09:00: Road closed due to accident:

    PSNI Holywood tweets:

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    David Somers

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    Diverted flight
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    Snow 2 March 2015

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    Collection of smartphones

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    How has an Indian tiger skin that used to belong to the Maharaja of Bundi ended up in East Belfast for the last 50 years?

    Shot tiger

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    Snow on the roads
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    Carl Frampton

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    Snow in Armagh

    You can watch Barra's vine here. Thanks to Nicola K for sending in her picture of the snow in Armagh above.

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    Snow and ice 2 March 2015

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    07:49: Burst water main

    NI Water are dealing with a burst water main on the King's Bridge in south Belfast as a high priority.

    Burst pipe

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    07:46: Snow on M1: BBC NI Travel

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    07:43: Blizzard conditions: Conor Macauley BBC News NI

    BBC News NI's Conor Macauley tweets: Blizzard in Banbridge.

    Blizzard Banbridge

    Send us your snow pics by emailing

    07:43: Two vehicle collision:

    Motorists should expect delays northbound on the A1 between Banbridge and Dromore near the Halfway House due to a two-vehicle collision.

    07:39: Drug driving tests:

    A new law to target drug driving comes into force in parts of the UK today - but not Northern Ireland.

    Gary McCutcheon from Randox Testing Services has just told Good Morning Ulster that introducing the law here could save lives.

    07:36: Crash in the snow:

    BBC NI Travel tweets:

    07:24: Snow on the roads:

    BBC Travel NI tweets:

    Snow 2 March 2015
    07:17: Burst water main

    A water main has burst on Governors Bridge in the Stranmillis area of south Belfast.

    Burst pipe Stranmillis
    07:11: Civil service redundancy scheme opens:

    An application process opens on Monday for volunteers for redundancy from the Northern Ireland Civil Service.


    The executive is seeking to close around 2,400 posts between September and next March. The intention is to save almost £90m per year in salaries.

    07:05: Naming ban bid:

    The Ulster Unionist MLA Tom Elliott plans to introduce legislation to prevent publicly funded facilities being named after people convicted of terror offences.

    Tom Elliott

    He will launch a private member's bill later today.

    07:02: Ireland's experience was key: BBC Sport NI

    Ireland coach Joe Schmidt says the fact his side had more experience in their ranks proved crucial in their Six Nations win over England in Dublin.

    Paul O'Connell

    The 19-9 victory keeps the Irish on course for a possible Grand Slam.



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