The reintroduction of rubbish bins in Central London suggests security services believe dissident groups like the Real IRA are incapable of mounting attacks on the City, a security source has told The Irish Post.
In 1993, more than 2,000 bins were removed from the Square Mile following the Bishopsgate truck bomb, which killed one person and injured 44.
Two months previously, the IRA detonated devices placed in litter bins in Warrington, which resulted in the deaths of Tim Parry and Johnathan Ball.
The nature of these attacks and others prompted the removal of bins in the Square Mile. But our source said the return of bins indicates that the threat of such an attack is no longer deemed to be serious.
“The threat from dissidents in terms of an attack on London is not seen as something which these groups can pull off,” said the source. “If it was, then the bins would not be put back.
“The decision to remove them was taken after IRA bomb attacks in Warrington and Bishopsgate but dissident groups do not have access to large quantities of high grade explosives now and the openings on these bins are very narrow, so stashing a bomb in such a bin would require the planting of a small amount of high-grade explosives like PETN or RDX, in order to be effective.
“Bar an odd kilo here or there, dissident republican groups do not have materials in any quantity that might cause concern in London.”
A spokesperson for the City of London police said: “Currently there is nothing to suggest that bringing the bins back would make the City more vulnerable.
“The new bins will be a different design to those previously placed in the City and security considerations will have been factored in the design.”
London City councillor for Bishopsgate Tom Sleigh added: “The security assessment is different to 1993 — not lower or higher — but the police have been consulted and are okay for this to go ahead.”
Experts now say the terror attack in 1993 marked a turning point in how security was dealt with in the capital after nearby buildings were damaged by the shockwaves.