Police at sceneImage copyright RobRandom
Image caption Police were called to King’s Stables Road on Thursday evening

Police are hunting the person responsible for a suspicious package which sparked a major alert near Edinburgh Castle.

The cardboard box was found in a shelter in Princes Street Gardens and taken to King’s Stables Road where a controlled explosion was carried out at 20:10 on Thursday.

Police said they were treating the incident with the “utmost seriousness”.

However, they found the box did not pose any risk to the public.

The road wqas closed for a number of hours, with police cordons also in place around West Princes Street Gardens.

The package, which looked like a shoebox, was discovered by a council park ranger at about 17:40 on Thursday.

A police spokesperson said: “In the current climate, we are treating this with the utmost seriousness and a full investigation into the circumstances is under way to identify the person responsible.

“This will require the ongoing presence of officers as investigations continue and we thank the public for their patience and co-operation.”

Ch Insp Alan Carson said officers recognised that the emergency service response may have caused concerns in the area.

“Anyone who believes they have information in relation to this incident can contact us,” he said.

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