Man fights for life after hammer attack in Belfast
A man has been rushed to hospital after being beaten by hammer-wielding thugs in west Belfast.
It is understood a chain was also used in the brutal attack, which took place just after 7pm last night at the junction of Springhill Avenue and Springhill Drive.
A Northern Ireland Ambulance Service spokesman said a rapid response paramedic and an A&E crew were immediately scrambled to the scene of the crime where the attack victim was reported to be unconscious.
The victim was taken to the Royal Victoria Hospital with life-threatening injuries.
Last night a spokesman for the Belfast Trust said the Trust was unable to give any information about the victim's condition.
Local Sinn Fein MP Paul Maskey told reporters: "There was a very short, intense fight between a number of people.
"Afterwards a young lad was rushed to hospital.
"There have been a lot of rumours about his condition but police have come back and said that he is quite badly injured.
"We're concerned about his condition. It is bad, but we are not sure how bad it is at this stage.
"We hope that those responsible for this assault are found as soon as possible."
One resident said: "I heard the sirens and saw all the lights in the street.
"I saw a man being put into the ambulance then the police started to put up tape.
"There are a lot of kids who play around here, one of them could have got caught up in it. This was madness."
The PSNI helicopter was called out to assist in the police operation which was launched in the wake of the vicious attack.
Belfast Telegraph Digital