Belfast Telegraph

Derry man recovering after being shot by gang in 'punishment' attack

The scene of the shooting in Ballymagroarty
The scene of the shooting in Ballymagroarty
Donna Deeney

By Donna Deeney

Dissident republicans are believed to have carried out a so-called 'punishment shooting' in Londonderry on Wednesday night.

A man in his 30s is recovering from gunshot wounds sustained in an attack by two masked men in the Ballymagroarty area.

He and another man were walking along Dunluce Court when they were approached by two men, one carrying a pistol.

The victim was told to lie on a grassy area where he was shot before the two suspects ran off.

Police are linking this attack to paramilitaries and while no group has claimed responsibility, dissident republicans have carried out similar attacks in Ballymagroarty and in nearby Galliagh in recent days.

While the victim's injuries are not thought to be life-threatening, residents living close to Dunluce Court where the attack happened described the incident as "sickening".

One woman said she heard the shot ring out and knew immediately what it was. She said: "I have lived here for too long not to recognise the sound of a gun being fired so I guessed right away what was happening.

"I didn't go out but I heard other people outside so I knew whoever it was [was] getting help. It is sickening that this is going on in this day and age but it is a sad fact of life in Ballymagroarty and there doesn't seem to be a lot that can be done about it."

Police have appealed for information. DI Michael Winters said: "This reckless attack occurred in a residential area at a time when there may have been people out and about. It is fortunate no one else was injured. There is absolutely no justification for an attack like this. It is utterly appalling and needs to stop."

People Before Profit councillor for the area and Westminster candidate, Shaun Harkin, said: "We have areas of severe deprivation, Ballymagroarty amongst them, and these types of barbaric attacks are not going to address that problem. In fact, they are only going to make the situation worse for people."

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