Bomb Pc 'worked for better society'
A young Catholic policeman murdered in a car bomb blast had joined the service to make society a better place, his close friends said.
Team-mates of Ronan Kerr in the Gaelic Athletic Association's (GAA) Beragh Red Knights club said the violent extremists who killed the 25-year-old Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) officer had claimed the life of "an Irishman and a Gael".
Detectives said the booby-trap bomb that killed Pc Kerr on Saturday in Omagh, Co Tyrone, was the size of a lunchbox, packed with 500g of high explosives and likely to have been detonated by a mercury tilt-switch.
This emerged as First Minister Peter Robinson, deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness and Justice Minister David Ford flanked Chief Constable Matt Baggott at Stormont in a symbolic show of unity.
Pc Kerr was one of a crop of new recruits that had altered the religious make-up of a force once dominated by Protestant officers, helping to overturn historic tensions with groups such as the GAA.
And the cross-community outrage over the murder was underlined by the words of Red Knights chairman Gearoid O Treasaigh who said Ronan's decision to join the police enjoyed the support of his team mates.
"Ronan Kerr was a Catholic, an Irishman and a Gael who joined the PSNI because he wanted to play his part in making our society a better place," he said.
"Many members of our club were aware of Ronan's career path and supported him on his choice.
"The GAA stands shoulder-to-shoulder with the Kerr family, the PSNI, and the entire community in condemning outright this murder.
"We also send a strong message today to all of those people who continue to engage in this activity - you have no support in our community and your actions do not represent the views and feelings of the vast majority of people in Ireland."