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No excuse for arson attacks in Armagh and Larne

A house has been badly damaged and two cars destroyed in an arson attack in Larne, County Antrim.The two cars were set alight outside the house in Magee Park shortly after 03:00 on Sunday. The fire also damaged the house. The occupants of the house were told to stay at the back of it while firefighters put the blaze out.Picture by Justin Kernoghan.


THE known details of a petrol bomb attack at a home in Armagh would indicate that a certain amount of planning went into a clearly determined attempt to set fire to the house.

A man in the property at the time of the arson attempt managed to put out the flames and despite the risk to himself was reportedly uninjured. The room suffered only scorch damage because of his prompt action.

However, we have seen in the past that such incidents can have very serious, even fatal, consequences for the targets of such attacks. Those who make and then throw a petrol bomb into an occupied home must know that they could quite easily cause not just damage but very possibly injury or death.

In this case it is believed a brick was used to break a window of the room into which the device was thrown. So these people were making every effort to make sure they started a serious fire.

Hopefully those responsible will be apprehended, brought before the courts and receive an appropriate jail term which reflects the fact that their actions could easily have resulted in death or injury.

All too often arson is used as a weapon. In Larne several attacks on vehicles and homes have taken place in recent months. There were more similar incidents reported in the Co Antrim town at the weekend.

There is no excuse for deliberately attacking property and particularly in a way which endangers the lives of members of the public. Hopefully the police will receive information which leads to the apprehension of those behind such firebomb attacks and that a consistent stern sentencing policy will leave other would-be arsonists in no doubt about the severity of the action they will face.

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