Lyra McKee murder: Londonderry murder reaction


Figures from the worlds of politics, journalism and beyond have united to condemn the murder of the Northern Ireland journalist Lyra McKee.

The Belfast woman was shot dead during rioting in Londonderry on Thursday night.

She had been standing near a police 4x4 vehicle when she was struck.

Police have said a dissident republican group called the New IRA was "likely" to be behind her killing.

Image source, Reuters

Prime Minister Theresa May

"She was a journalist who died doing her job with great courage."

"My deepest condolences go to her family, friends and colleagues.

Image source, RTÉ

Taoiseach (Irish prime minister) Leo Varadkar

"We are all full of sadness after last night's events.

"We cannot allow those who want to propagate violence, fear and hate to drag us back to the past."

Northern Ireland Secretary Karen Bradley

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Image source, PACEMAKER

Rainbow Project director John O'Doherty

"We have been reading about the huge impact Lyra had on so many within Northern Irelands LGBT community, including supporting people in coming out and using her own coming-out story to empower others to live as their most authentic selves.

"To lose someone like Lyra at any age is a difficult thing to accept but to lose her at 29 in such despicable and avoidable circumstances is devastating."

Democratic Unionist Party leader Arlene Foster

"Heartbreaking news. A senseless act.

"Those who brought guns onto our streets in the '70s, '80s and '90s were wrong - it is equally wrong in 2019."

Image source, Pacemaker

Sinn Féin president Mary Lou McDonald

"Ms McKee will be remembered as kind, caring and passionate journalist and advocate.

"Her contribution to society stands in marked contrast to those who brutally took her life."

Image source, SDLP

Derry City and Strabane Mayor John Boyle

"I knew Lyra McKee very well - I was one of her media lecturers as part of the Headliners project some years ago and we have been in regular contact since then.

"Lyra was a bright, intelligent and articulate writer with a witty, warm and fun-loving personality and her murder has sent shockwaves among the entire community."

European Parliament President Antonio Tajani

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Ulster Unionist Party leader Robin Swann

"This was an attack on democracy.

"We cannot allow this society to be dragged back by those who have nothing to offer but murder and mayhem."

SDLP leader Colum Eastwood

"Those responsible for this heinous crime need to be faced down - they need to be made to realise that their fight is not with the [police] or with young journalists doing their job.

"Their fight is with all of us, the people of Ireland, and it is a fight that they will never win."

Image source, PA

Alliance Party leader Naomi Long

"I am utterly shocked to hear this news and feel devastated for Lyra's partner, family, friends and loved ones.

"They are going to have to live with this loss, their grief and pain for the rest of their lives, while those who carried it out will walk away without feeling."

Green Party leader Clare Bailey

"Waking on Good Friday 21 years ago to news that a peace deal had been reached and that violence would now be ended.

"Waking on Good Friday this morning to news that the beautiful, kind and soulful Lyra McKee has been shot dead."

Image source, Brian Lawless

TUV leader Jim Allister

"In our dealings with Miss McKee, the TUV always found her professional, courteous and fair.

"Of course what happened last night is nothing new. - the use of violence by republicans in Northern Ireland is something we have been plagued by for generations."

Amnesty International Northern Ireland

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Northern Ireland Policing Board vice-chair Debbie Watters

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Unison regional secretary Patricia McKeown

"Lyra is not just another dead journalist, another worker murdered at work - she was a child when the peace accord was signed.

"She was from the generation that we all hoped would enjoy a better future."

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