Anti-vigilante group calls protest in wake of shootings spate

Shooting.
Shooting.

Protestors will gather in Derry's 'Peace Park' on Friday to demonstrate against recent paramilitary-style shootings in the city.

The rally, which will take place at 5pm opposite the Guildhall, has been called by RAAD-Not in Our Name, a group established several years ago to oppose the actions of Republican Action Against Drugs (RAAD), a now defunct Derry-based vigilante group, thought to have coalesced with other republican factions under an IRA/Óglaigh na hÉireann banner.

It follows the shooting of a 44-year-old man in Galliagh in July, the release of two semi-automatic rounds into a Shantallow front door last week, and, most recently, the shooting by appointment, of a man in the Bogside on Tuesday.

Over the past eight years, 89 people have been victimised in the Derry area in so-called 'punishment attacks.'

Davy McCauley, of RAAD-Not in Our Name, said: "Over the last number of weeks there has been a huge increase in these attacks culminating in the disgusting shooting of a young man in the Bogside on Tuesday night.

"The level of violence inflicted on the unfortunate victim sent shockwaves through the community, the perpetrators having shot him in both legs and in the stomach.

"There is real anger that such barbarism is carried out by those who claim to have a community mandate.

"This protest gives the community the opportunity to clearly demonstrate that we do not want, support or give any permission to masked thugs to act on our behalf.

"Everyone who opposes vigilantism is welcome. We call on people from across the political spectrum to join us and start building a new movement that consigns these violent actions to the dustbin of history."