Police in Derry find two 'dissident' handguns in cemetery

NewsBy Jamie McDowell
Police in Derry find two 'dissident' handguns in cemetery

The PSNI has uncovered two semi-automatic handguns following a search of Derry City Cemetery last night.

The weapons have been taken away for further examination.

The police have said that they believe the weapons, which were reportedly found inside a car in the cemetery, are linked to dissident republicans.

The weapons were found as a series of controlled explosions were carried out in the area,

Commenting on the operation, District Commander Superintendent Mark McEwan said: “As part of a police investigation into violent dissident republican activity a policing operation was undertaken yesterday in the grounds of the City Cemetery. As a result of this operation police have recovered two semi-automatic handguns. These are weapons that are made and possessed with one purpose in mind and that is to kill or cause serious injury to people. Those involved are intent on carrying out attacks on police officers and the local community. I am thankful this morning to be able to confirm we have taken these weapons out of circulation.

“While the removal of these weapons is a success it is very worrying to think that, within the District, this is now three firearms we have taken out of circulation this week. I cannot say if these are linked but violent dissident republican activity is the main focus of our investigations into both seizures.

“I would appeal to anyone within the community who has any information about this activity or those who are involved in it to contact Detectives in Strand Road. I would also like to thank the community, this is a very sensitive area to have to carry out such an operation and shows the total disregard that those involved have for the people of this City. It has caused significant disruption and we will work hard this morning to try and bring the operation to a conclusion.”

Anyone with any information about this incident is asked to contact Detectives in Strand Road on the non-emergency number 101. Or, if someone would prefer to provide information without giving their details they can contact the independent charity Crimestoppers and speak to them anonymously on 0800 555 111.