Northern Ireland · Political

The Troubles: Bloody Friday

July 21, 1972
Belfast, Northern Ireland
In one day, later called “Bloody Friday,” 22 bombs detonate killing 9 and wounding 130

“Bloody Friday” was one instance in the thirty-year conflict in Northern Ireland known as The Troubles, pitting Nationalists (those who fought to end British rule in Northern Ireland and who were primarily Catholics) and Loyalists (those loyal to the British Crown and who were primarily Protestants) against each other. Spanning from 1968 to 1998, The Troubles saw the deaths of over 3,500 (including 1,841 civilians) and over 47,500 injuries.

The car bombs were detonated within an 80-minute time span, primarily targeting buildings. The Provisional Irish Republican Army (IRA) claimed they had sent telegraphed warnings 30 minutes prior to the explosions but stated the warnings were willfully ignored. Security forces denied this claim, stating they were overwhelmed with bombings and bomb threats, and believed many to be hoaxes. Of the nine victims killed in the Bloody Friday blasts, five were civilians.

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