**From yesterday

Incendiary device found in store

The police advised shop owners to return to their premises

An incendiary device has been found following a security alert in Belfast city centre.

The device was discovered concealed in clothing on the first floor of the Primark department store at Castle Street/Royal Avenue about tea-time on Wednesday.

It was made safe and taken away for examination by forensic scientists.

The police advised shop owners to return to carry out checks on their premises.

Earlier on Wednesday, police said patrols would increase in the run up to Christmas after a number of incendiary devices were found in the city.

One device partially ignited on Saturday afternoon in a store on High Street. No-one was injured.

Assistant Chief Constable Duncan McCausland also appealed to shoppers to be vigilant.

"I hope that the extra patrols will work to disrupt criminal activity and help ensure that Belfast City Centre is a safer place to live, work and, importantly at this time of year, to shop," he said.

"These devices put lives and property at risk and cause unnecessary disruption to all. A device ignited in a store in Belfast city centre on Saturday afternoon and many people could have been hurt and property destroyed but for the quick thinking of staff.

"As the season of goodwill approaches, some elements of society are intent on causing destruction and putting lives at risk.

"We are taking this opportunity to urge traders to be vigilant to ensure their premises remain secure during peak trading times," said the assistant chief constable.

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