Bomb scare on St Giles: Live

Monday 17th February, 15.00: The New IRA has claimed responsibility for the bomb threat on Thursday.

In a statement reported by the The Irish News, the New IRA said, “The IRA claims responsibility for the explosive devices that were sent to British armed forces recruitment centres in England. Attacks will continue when and where the IRA see fit.”

Read the full story here

Friday 14th February: Cherwell’s front page for this week. Get the paper from your JCR, or read the full story with pictures here

19.00: A spokesperson for Number 10 has identified a potential link to Northern Irish terrorism in the targeting of Oxford and other armed forces offices.

“Seven suspect packages have been identified as containing small, crude, but potentially viable devices bearing the hallmarks of Northern Ireland related terrorism,” a Downing Street spokesperson said at 6.34pm. Read the full story here

Summary: 18.00: Our summary of the day’s events is now online here

Here are a selection of tweets from the day.

16:51 The BBC reports that David Cameron is chairing an emergency COBRA meeting to discuss the suspicious packages.

Summary of the day’s events to follow.

14.34 The police tape has been taken down and the bomb disposal van is being packed up, Jack Doyle reports.

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It seems like it’s all over!

14.06 Some more pictures from the scene

 

 

 

14.05 Keep up to date with live images from the university’s webcam on St Giles: bit.ly/LX2vzJ

13.36 Cordon being extended to the war memorial on St. Giles, as far as Beaumont Street

13.33 

13.27 Anxious shoppers have been assured by police that anyone whose car is stuck in the cordon and gets a ticket will be able to appeal

13.18 News from Jack Doyle that the cordon is being continually extended, stretching all the way to the Lamb and Flag. Pedestrians are being told to use Keble Road to get to the city centre

13.16 

13.03 Reports that buildings beyond 42 St Giles are being evacuated

12.45 Thames Valley Police have released a statement on behalf of the South East Counter Terrorism Unit

The South East Counter Terrorism Unit is currently investigating reports of a number of suspect packages found at Army Careers offices today (13/2).

The contents of the package are being assessed and MOD Bomb Disposal Units have been called, as is routine with any suspect package.

The packages were found at Army Careers offices in St Giles, Oxford, Queensmere Shopping Centre, Slough, and Queens Road, Brighton.

Suspect packages were found at a number of Army Careers offices yesterday (12/2) in Aldershot, Reading and Chatham.

Det Supt Stan Gilmour of the South East Counter Terrorism Unit said: “Because suspicious packages were found at various locations yesterday notes were sent out to all the Army Careers offices as well as the Post Office asking staff to be extra vigilant and look out for any suspect packages.”

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12.34 Jack Matthews speculates about the cause of the bomb scare: 

12.30 

A suspicious package has been sent to the Oxford army recruitment office on St. Giles, according to the Oxford Mail.

The street has been cordoned off and is marshalled by the police. It is expected that the bomb disposal squad will arrive in due course. The package is thought to be one of three sent to various army offices across the country.

A spokesperson from the Ministry of Defence confirmed the sending of the packages, telling the Oxford Mail, “We are aware of incidents currently ongoing in Oxford, Brighton and Slough Armed Forces careers offices. These are being investigated by civilian police with military support.”

The news comes a day after another suspicious package was sent to St. Mary Butts, Reading.