Simon Coveney and Arlene Foster visit Derry after violent unrest

PSNI says it is a ‘miracle’ no officers were injured in six nights of violence in the city

Tánaiste Simon Coveney has visited Derry following six nights of violence in the city. Photograph: Nick Bradshaw/The Irish Times

Tánaiste Simon Coveney has visited Derry following six nights of violence in the city. Photograph: Nick Bradshaw/The Irish Times

 

Tánaiste Simon Coveney and DUP leader Arlene Foster have visited Derry following six successive nights of violence in the city.

Mr Coveney met police and residents from the Bogside after a bout of unrest which saw explosive devices hurled at officers and dozens of petrol bombs thrown.

On Saturday, the PSNI said they had welcomed an incident-free Friday night in the Bogside and Fountain areas of the city.

The visits by the politicians came after police said it was a “miracle” no officers had been injured in the violence.

Ms Foster visited the unionist Fountain estate, where rioters have targeted homes. In a post on Twitter, she said she was “so proud of the community spirit” there.

Before his arrival, Mr Coveney tweeted: “On road to #Derry to meet + show solidarity with all political, community and youth leaders working to end rioting and violence.

“Derry is a great city, making progress, wanting to look forward not backwards.”

Mr Coveney met with the Unity of Purpose group to discuss how community groups, political parties and the PSNI can “work together positively”.

He also said it was great to meet PSNI officers to thank them for their service “at the end of a difficult week”.

Charges

Police investigating the disorder in Derry have charged a 22-year-old man with three counts of possessing explosives with intent to endanger life, riotous behaviour, making petrol bombs, possessing petrol bombs in suspicious circumstances and indecent exposure.

A 17-year-old boy was arrested on suspicion of possessing petrol bombs in suspicious circumstances, throwing a petrol bomb, and riotous behaviour, and another 16-year-old boy was arrested on suspicion of a number of public order offences, police said.

The force said a 16-year-old boy who was arrested on suspicion of attempted murder has been released unconditionally. – PA