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Man shot in head in west Belfast in critical condition

Published 19/11/2015

The scene in Shaws Road, west Belfast, after a man was shot in the head

A man shot in the head in west Belfast is in a critical condition in hospital.

Two men were arrested after the attack in Rossnareen Avenue in the Shaws Road area during morning rush-hour.

The middle-aged victim, who is being treated in intensive care, is from the Traveller community. He had been in the passenger seat of a black Vauxhall car on a busy road close to a school. The window of the car had been shattered.

The female driver of the vehicle drove them away from the scene, stopping further down Shaws Road close to its junction with Rosgoill Park.

The injured man was then taken to hospital by ambulance.

PSNI detective chief inspector Gary Reid said: "A man in his 40s sustained a gunshot wound to the upper body in an incident at Rossnareen Avenue shortly before 9am.

"He was taken from the scene by car, and then transferred to an ambulance at Shaws Road and brought to hospital."

Sinn Fein Assembly member Rosie McCorley condemned the shooting.

"The people who carried out this attack had no regard for the local community, given that many people including children were heading to and from school and work at the time of the shooting," she said.

"There can be no excuses or justification for shooting people on a busy road in broad daylight. "

The shooting happened near the junction of Shaws Road and Rossnareen Road.

Detectives appealed for witnesses to come forward.

SDLP west Belfast Assembly member Alex Attwood said it was a vicious attack on a busy road at rush hour in front of many people, including many children.

"I want to extend my sympathies to the family of the victim at this very difficult time and to the second person in the vehicle who I understand is being treated for shock," he said.

"I would urge everybody in this community to keep calm and ensure that a difficult situation is not made worse in the time ahead."

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