Paramilitary shootings decrease in Derry area

The number of paramilitary shootings in the Derry & Strabane area halved over the past year, it’s been revealed.

By The Newsroom
Friday, 10th December 2021, 9:40 am
Paramilitary attacks have decreased in Derry district over past 12 months.

According to the Independent Reporting Commission (IRC) - the body set up to report annually on overall efforts to tackle paramilitarism in NI - shootings in the local policing district decreased from 12 to six in 2020/21.

The IRC’s annual report also reveals that, over the same period, five paramilitary style attacks (PSA) took place in the Derry-Strabane area.

Its research also reveals that, over the past four years, one of NI’s “PSA hotspots” has been the Creggan South electoral ward.

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The IRC says there were three bombings in the local policing district in the past twelve months.

It also reports that a project has been carried out in the Galliagh area of the city seeking to divert young people away from involvement in paramilitarism or being targeted by paramilitaries.

Meanwhile, in Derry’s Creggan, there is an ongoing scheme designed to reduce the community’s vulnerability to paramilitarism.

The IRC says it remains concerned about the risks posed to society by the continuing existence of paramilitary structures which can “be harnessed for the purposes of violence or the threat of violence”.

It says the goal of tackling paramilitarism must be assigned a “high priority” in any new Programme for Government for the NI Executive. Political leadership, it says, will be key.

The report also calls for a new body to be set up to talk to illegal groups and bring about their disbandment.

The IRC was established by the British and Irish governments in 2017.