ARE IRA ‘ HIT SQUADS ‘ BACK IN ACTION ASKS MAGINNESS ?
‘ The whole handling of this serious shooting raises mathe entrance toand some of them are questions for the chief constable – Alban Maginess.
IRA ” hit squads ” may have been behind the shooting of 18-year-old Padraig McAleenan, the SDLP suggested last night. A prominent assembly member highligtted parallels between the attack in North Belfast this week and the murder of Robert McCartney in 2005.
The teenager was shot three times in the upper leg at thebenterance to the Flax Centre Ardoyne on Tuesday night. He underwent a 10-hour operation having suffered a damaged pelvis, a hole in his bladder and ” ripped ” stomach. Shankill bomber Sean Kelly was arrested and questioned over the shooting on Wednsday, sparking a major political row, but was released unconditonally 36 hours later. CCTV footage was removed by masked men from the Ardoyne complex on Thursday morning. Meanwhile, the PSNI description of he PSNI description of the attack shifted from ” paramilitary-related ” to ” non-paramilitary-related “, before reverting back to the original position. SDLP North Belfast assembly member Alban Maginness said he is seeking an ” urgent meeting ” with police chiefs to discuss the crime.
” The whole handling of this serious shooting raise many questions and some of them are questions for the chief constable,” he said. ” Why this was first described as a paramilitary shooting and why was that description retracted and then reinstated within a few hours ? ” There are other questions. If Sinn Fein demand even-handed policing they cannot change their tune every time a member of the Provisional movement is arrested, otherwise they are really demanding political policing.” He also drew attention back to the Provisional IRA by linking the attack directly to the 2005 murder of Robert McCartney and a subsequent forensic clean-up by memembers of the organization. ” In this case masked men removed CCTV tapes and witnesses reportedly refused to testify immediately afterwards,” Mr Maginness said. ” This is precisely the pattern of events we remember from the murder of Robert McCartney and that raises the really big question – are the hit squads of the past back in business ?” Police last night would only repeat an earlier response by way of explanation for changing classification of the attack, saying ” investigative process into the motive behind incidents of this nature are fluid “.
With many thanks to : BIMPE ARCHER, IRISH NEWS.
- Ex-IRA bomber Sean Kelly released (independent.ie)
- Robinson call on teenager shooting (independent.ie)
- Senior republican held over shooting (bbc.co.uk)
- Tensions mount as IRA bomber released over shooting (newsletter.co.uk)