"I have this morning been fully briefed on the appalling terrorist attack last night at the Army Barracks in Antrim.

The Garda Commissioner has been in touch with Sir Hugh Orde and has pledged the continuing support of the Irish authorities in the fight against this type of crime. He reiterated that the high level of cooperation that exists between the two forces will be maintained and no effort will be spared on our part. I briefed my Cabinet colleagues a fortnight ago on the increased level of threat from dissidents and again reiterated this to the Taoiseach and other Cabinet colleagues last week.

I join with my colleagues in unreservedly condemning this attack and the senseless loss of life and I want to offer my condolences to the families of those who have lost their lives and to those who have been injured.

The Garda Commissioner, Sir Hugh Orde and senior officials on both sides will meet in the coming days."