A car bomb has been made safe outside Crossmaglen police station in south Armagh.
The device, in a car abandoned outside the station, is understood to have consisted of a number of containers filled with flammable liquid.
Chief Inspector Sam Cordner said if had exploded anyone in the immediate area could have been killed or seriously injured.
The car – a red Peugeot – was left outside the station on Saturday night.
On Sunday, army bomb experts carried out a controlled explosion on the vehicle.
“Whoever is responsible showed complete disregard for the lives of police officers and members of the local community,” Chief Inspector Cordner said.
“I would like to place on record my thanks to local people and their representatives for their patience and support during the operation to make this device safe.”
Police appealed for anybody with information about the red Peugeot 406 car to contact them.
The police station has been attacked a number of times in recent months, including a gun attack at the end of December.