Northern Ireland

West Belfast shooting: Man dies in hospital

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Media captionPolice do not believe dissident republicans were involved in Mr Gibson's murder

A 28-year-old man who was shot in west Belfast has died in hospital.

Edward Gibson was attacked in an alleyway beside Divis Tower at 17:10 BST on Friday. He was shot in his stomach and thigh. Three people have been arrested.

Police are linking the killing to a fight that broke out nearby in Albert Street 30 minutes earlier.

After the shooting, the fight continued in the Royal Victoria Hospital's accident and emergency unit.

Police said they did not believe dissident republicans were involved but had not ruled out a punishment-style attack.

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Image caption Forensics experts carried out tests along the entry where it happened
Image copyright PAcemaker
Image caption Police have appealed for witnesses to contact them

The shooting on Friday happened in an entry that runs between Divis Street and Clonfaddan Crescent.

A 31-year-old woman and two men, aged 33 and 30, have been arrested.

The 30-year-old man who was arrested had been treated in hospital for stab wounds thought to have been sustained in the earlier fight.

Det Ch Insp Justyn Galloway said he was appealing for witnesses.

"I am making a particular appeal to Edward's friends and associates to come forward and speak to detectives to provide us with the information we need to identify and bring those responsible before the courts," he said.

"Edward's family and friends are devastated by this murder, and regardless of the altercation that has happened earlier in the day or what has gone before, there is no justification for his murder.

"This happened at rush hour, and it's concerning to us that these two incidents escalated to the extent that they did."

Image caption Flowers were left at the scene on Saturday as police investigations continued
Image caption The area was cordoned off while police examined the scene

SDLP councillor Tim Attwood said it was an appalling incident.

"Whatever the circumstances there is no place for the use of guns or violence in our society," he said.

"It is important that any witnesses come forward and give information to the PSNI."

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