Alex Maskey: Assembly speaker told he is under threat

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Alex MaskeyImage source, NI Assembly
Image caption,
Alex Maskey said threats against any elected representative were "deplorable"

The Northern Ireland Assembly Speaker, Alex Maskey, says the Police Service of Northern Ireland has made him aware of a threat against him.

He said he was visited by police officers on Thursday and warned of an "imminent attack".

BBC News NI understands it is the latest threat against Sinn Féin members from dissident republicans.

The PSNI said: "We do not discuss the security of individuals and no inference should be drawn from this."

It added: "However, if we receive information that a person's life may be at risk we will inform them accordingly. We never ignore anything which may put an individual at risk."

In a statement, Mr Maskey said such threats or "vile abuse on social media" against elected representatives were "deplorable".

He said: "I note that this threat was received in the week when I announced my intention to use the role of speaker to represent every side of the assembly chamber and to engage with every section of our community.

"This threat will not deter me from those events or continuing such efforts in the future."