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Journalist McKee pictured in Belfast Journalist McKee pictured in Belfast 

Journalist shot dead in Northern Ireland

Police in Northern Ireland say the dissident republican group, the New IRA, was most likely responsible for the fatal shooting of a journalist during overnight rioting in the Creggan area of the city of Londonderry.

A journalist from Northern Ireland was shot dead during overnight rioting in the city of Derry, also known as Londonderry.

The Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) said on Friday that the dissident republican group, the New IRA, was most likely responsible.

Assistant Chief Constable Mark Hamilton said, they believed the killing of Lyra McKee “to be a terrorist act."

Eyewitnesses said that a gunman fired indiscriminately into a crowd during riots on the crowded Creggan housing complex in the city.

 U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May called the death of McKee "shocking and truly senseless."

The Bishop of Derry, Donal McKeown said in a statement that the murder of the 29 year old caused widespread shock and revulsion.

He added, “our first thoughts and prayers are with Ms McKee’s family and friends who are terribly grieved by her killing.”

The Bishop also stressed, “that spirit of coming together against violence has brought us a long way in the last twenty years. It will continue today for we believe the original Good Friday message that love is stronger than hatred.”

The New IRA is a small group of republicans who reject the 1998 Good Friday agreement that saw the Irish Republican Army enter into a political solution to the long-running violence known as "The Troubles" that claimed more than 3,700 lives.

Read the full statement by Bishop McKeown below

This Good Friday morning there is a deep air of sadness hanging over this city. The murder of journalist Lyra McKee is causing widespread shock and revulsion. Our first thoughts and prayers are with Ms McKee’s family and friends who are terribly grieved by her killing.

I have every confidence that the wider community will come together at this time to make clear our conviction that violence solves nothing. Last July this city of Derry stood together against those who sought to engender conflict. I repeat my call from the Unity of Purpose rally on Fahan Street that destruction and aggression end up damaging the very communities that some people claim to be defending. You cannot claim to love your country and, at the same time, cause death and pain to the people who live here. All who live here deserve to be cherished equally.

That spirit of coming together against violence has brought us a long way in the last twenty years. It will continue today for we believe the original Good Friday message that love is stronger than hatred.

19 April 2019, 15:17