Friends of Lyra McKee stage protest at Saoradh base in Derry

Friends of murdered Derry journalist and activist, Lyra McKee, staged a protest at Junior McDaid House yesterday after Saoradh claimed a republican volunteer had been attempting to defend local people when he shot at and killed her.

Tuesday, 23rd April 2019, 7:50 am
Updated Tuesday, 23rd April 2019, 8:58 am
Friends of murdered journalist Lyra McKee put red handprints in a wall of the dissident republican office in Derry with red paint. (Cate McCurry/PA Wire)

Yesterday afternoon friends of Lyra McKee gathered at Saoradh headquarters and used red paint to place hand prints onto posters at the Chamberlain Street building before linking arms in a circle to remember their friend.

There was a police presence in the area at the time.

Lyra was a bystander who was among a large group of people who were on the streets watching the unfolding riot in Creggan during police search operations last Thursday night when she was fatally wounded in what police claim was a New IRA attack.

Friends of murdered journalist Lyra McKee in Chamberlain Street. (Cate McCurry/PA Wire)

Following the killing, dissident republican group Saraodh, the alleged politicial wing of the New IRA, sparked a backlash by claiming on Friday that “the blame for last night lies squarely at the feet of the British Crown Forces.”

Commenting on the protest, Lyra’s friend Sinead Quinn, who took part in the company of female friends, said the red paint was used to symbolise that Saraodh had ‘blood on their hands.’

“You don’t shoot accidentally,” she insisted. “When you put a gun into someone’s hand and they shoot it, that’s murder.

“They are not a representation of people in this town. Those people don’t represent republicanism. Nobody can support shooting into a crowd and killing a 29-years-old woman. People have been afraid to stand up to people like this, but we are not afraid.”