Northern Ireland: Bus hijacked and set on fire | News | DW

Orignally published on 2021-11-07 22:27:00 by www.dw.com

Four men hijacked and set fire to a bus in a pro-British unionist community in Northern Ireland on Sunday evening, police said.

“It was reported that four men got onto the bus and ordered passengers off before the bus was then set alight,” the Police Service of Northern Ireland said in a statement.

Police said they received a report of a hijacking incident in the Church Road area of Newtownabbey, a settlement north of Belfast, around 7:45 p.m. UTC.

There were no reports of injuries.

“Church Road is currently closed and diversions are in place and police would ask members of the public to avoid the area,” the statement added.

Driver ‘badly shaken’

Bus operator Translink said the driver and a small number of passengers safely disembarked the bus before it was torched. 

“Our driver is badly shaken and is currently being supported by colleagues,” the company said in a statement.

“We are very disappointed by this intimidating attack on our member of staff and public transport services in the area. We utterly condemn this behavior and will be working closely with the PSNI (Police Service of Northern Ireland) to investigate this incident,” the statement added.

Post-Brexit threatens peace in Northern Ireland

It’s the second time in recent weeks that a bus has been hijacked and set on fire in Northern Ireland. A similar incident last week appeared to be tied to post-Brexit issues, Reuters news agency reported, citing local media.

After Sunday’s incident, Infrastructure Minister Nichola Mallon tweeted: “Buses are paid for and owned by the people of Northern Ireland… What does this madness achieve?!”

Orignally published on 2021-11-07 22:27:00 by www.dw.com

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