PSNI (Police Services Northern Ireland, formerly known as the RUC, or Royal Ulster Constabulary), recently informed the public of it’s accomplishments in the interest of public safety regarding “suspicious devices”.
To be proper, it was the Independent Reviewer Of the Justice and Security Act of 2007 which made the information available to the public.
According to said institution, the PSNI and the military were called out 347 times in 2014 to investigate possible explosive devices. Of those, 67 were reported to be I.E.D. (improvised explosive devices), 22 were reported explosions, 2 were incendiary devices, and 123 concerned munitions or possible bomb components.
59 of the incidents were false alarms. 74 were hoaxes.
No one can dispute that the PSNI has shown a great concern for the public welfare in carrying out their duty in these matters. Arrests were made in some cases. What concerns me, is that 347 incidents nearly amounts to one incident for every day of the year, perhaps indicating a lack of investigation before the fact.
Yesterday, it was revealed that Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness was warned by the PSNI that he was being targeted by the “Continuity IRA”, presumably to be the victim of a rocket attack. The warning shows intelligence; “forearmed is forewarned”.
McGuinness has stated “If those behind this threat think they have the ability to destroy the peace agreements which have been endorsed by the overwhelming majority of the people of Ireland then they are clearly detached from reality.”
It is too early to know how the PSNI came by this information, and as of today, no arrests have been made. However, in the hopes of a continuing peace, it would be in PSNI’s best interests to ensure the protection of it’s public before rather than after the fact.