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Thread: Attack on british soldiers in Northern Ireland

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    Default Attack on british soldiers in Northern Ireland

    Two Soldiers Dead in N.Ireland Army Base Shooting



    Two soldiers died and four people were wounded in a shooting at a British army base in Northern Ireland late Saturday, police said, raising fears the province's troubled past may have returned.
    The attack took place at the headquarters of the Royal Engineers in Northern Ireland at Massereene, northwest of Belfast, police said.
    The Ministry of Defense confirmed the two dead were soldiers, while police added that two of the four injured, who are reported to be in a serious condition, were also military personnel.

    Reports suggested gunmen armed with machine guns entered the barracks as pizzas were delivered to soldiers and fired up to 40 shots in two long bursts of gunfire.
    "I understand that gunmen with machine guns entered the barracks... and opened fire," Democratic Unionist lawmaker Jeffrey Donaldson told BBC television, adding they got in "possibly in the guise of a pizza delivery van".
    Others with knowledge of the situation suggested gunmen followed a pizza delivery vehicle as it was let on to the base.

    The shootings, the first of their kind in Northern Ireland for years, have raised fears for the stability of the devolved power-sharing government, which unites former foes from across the Protestant and Catholic divide.
    "This has taken us back into bad, bad old days that we have long since left behind us," Thomas Burns, a lawmaker with the nationalist
    SDLP told BBC television. "Everybody is very concerned that this will cause the power-sharing executive to wobble a bit."

    He added that the finger of suspicion was pointing at Republican dissidents, although no one has claimed responsibility for the attack.

    A spokeswoman for Prime Minister Gordon Brown's Downing Street office condemned the "terrible" attack.
    Meanwhile, Northern Ireland First Minister Peter Robinson has postponed an imminent official trip to the United States.

    Northern Ireland endured three decades of civil unrest known as the Troubles in which around 3,000 people were killed. The violence largely ended with the signing of the 1998 Good Friday Agreement.
    A deal was agreed in 2007 in which the mainly Protestant Democratic Unionists, which want Northern Ireland to stay part of Britain, and Catholic Sinn Fein, which calls for integration into the Republic of Ireland, agreed to form a power-sharing government which has devolved power from London.

    British soldiers have not patrolled in Northern Ireland for two years as part of the peace process but the army still has a significant garrison presence there.
    Northern Ireland's top policeman Sir Hugh Orde said last week he had called in specialist support from the British military to deal with the high and rising threat from dissident Republicans against police.

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    Intense. I'm curious what our UK members have to say about this.

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    The Peace Process is fragile and has been since the devolved Govt came into power - regardless of what the politicians tell us. The hatred is ingrained, there will never be harmony in NI.

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