David Cameron paid tribute to murdered police officer Ronan Kerr in the Commons as he pledged the killers would not be allowed to derail the peace process.
During the first Prime Minister’s Questions since the 25-year-old was killed in a booby-trap car bombing, he insisted dissidents could not deter the wishes of the “overwhelming majority that want a peaceful future”.
Strangford MP Jim Shannon called for Mr Cameron to give guarantees the dissident threat would be dealt with forcefully.
He said: “On Easter Monday dissident republicans held a commemorative parade in Londonderry and threw down the gauntlet to all the law-abiding citizens in Northern Ireland.
“The murderous thugs that are dissident republicans threatened to kill PSNI officers, both Roman Catholic and Protestant; they threatened the churches, both Protestant and Roman Catholic; they threatened politicians, both unionist and nationalist; and they threatened members of the Northern Ireland Assembly and MPs in this House.
“Can the Prime Minister assure the House that this attack on the democratic process will be met forcefully, and that those republican terrorists must be brought to justice?”
Mr Cameron said the PSNI has been funded “appropriately” and was working well since devolution. “I can give that assurance,” he said.
“I am sure that the whole House will also want to join me in sending our condolences to the family, friends and colleagues of police constable Ronan Kerr.
“Those who murdered him must not be allowed to deter the wishes of the overwhelming majority of people who want a peaceful and shared future for Northern Ireland.”