Murder jpg

Former IRA man shot dead in Belfast

Murder  jpg

Murder jpg

Police at the murder scene in Belfast last night. Pacemaker Photo

By Ciara Quinn

A murder inquiry has been launched after a former member of the Provisional IRA was shot dead in East Belfast on Wednesday night.

Father-of-nine Kevin McGuigan Sr. was shot in his home at Comber Street in the Short Strand.

Police said he was one of a number of suspects in the murder of Gerard ‘Jock’ Davison – a former senior IRA man – who was shot dead as he walked to work in Belfast in May.

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Mr. McGuigan was treated by paramedics at the scene before being taken to the Royal Victoria Hospital for treatment, but later died from his wounds.

The victim’s mother, Margaret McGuigan, told the BBC that her son’s killers would have to live with what they had done and that she “would pray for them.”

She added there had been “too many murders” in the area and that she hoped her son’s would be the last.

Mr. McGuigan had been questioned by police after the murder of 47-year-old Jock Davison.

McGuigan was previously shot several times in a so-called punishment attack

Sinn Féin Councilor, Niall Ó Donnghaile, who lives in the Short Strand, said: "The community
here rejects any attempt by any armed group to turn the clock back to the past."

SDLP leader Alasdair McDonnell condemned the attack.

“Those behind this savagery on our streets must be brought to justice," he said.

“There is no place for the gun in our society,” said Alliance Party leader and Justice Minister David Ford.

“Those responsible for this appalling crime have left a family grieving and a community in shock.”

Northern Ireland's First Minster, Peter Robinson, said there would be repercussions if any organization was found to be involved in the murder.

Robinson was asked if he was concerned that IRA, or former IRA members, may have carried out the attack.

"I think everyone should be concerned that would be the case," he said.

"We will speak to the PSNI to see what their findings are in terms of the involvement of any organization. But let's be very clear, there will be repercussions if that was found to be the case."

Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness said his thoughts were with the McGuigan family.

“I unreservedly condemn this appalling deed,” he said.