Londonderry Police pay tribute to Lyra McKee and urge public to help end ‘New IRA’ SUBSCRIBE: https://youtu.be/nE2uhv-ZCSw : COPS in Northern Ireland believe violent paramilitary group the New IRA was probably responsible for the fatal shooting of a journalist during rioting in the city of Londonderry.
But who is the New IRA and how is the group different from the IRA?
Who is the New IRA?
The New Irish Republican Army is made up of disgruntled ex-Provisional IRA members combined with dissidents from other groups.
The Independent explains that while the group calls itself the “IRA”, it’s commonly titled the “New IRA” and is an “offshoot of the Provisional IRA active during The Troubles” that claimed more than 3,700 lives.
It’s a small group of republicans who reject the 1998 Good Friday agreement.
The violent paramilitary group has been responsible for a number of attacks and murders over the past eight years.
In July last year, Northern Ireland’s police chief blamed the so-called “New IRA” as the primary dissident republican group orchestrating rioting and murder bids on his officers in Londonderry.
It’s been heavily criticised as a “throwback to the past”, at a time when the Northern Ireland city of Londonderry has been moving forward.
And it’s hell-bent on becoming a major terror threat after a car bomb went off in Derry in January this year, while security forces have also seen an increase in punishment beatings.
Armed New IRA terrorists planted the explosives in a hijacked pizza delivery car, cops said at the time, in an attack described as a “very significant attempt to kill people in the community.”
News agency the Press Association explains that the New IRA is the biggest of the dissident republican groups operating in Northern Ireland.
It has been linked to four murders including the shooting of journalist Lyra McKee, 29,in Londonderry on Thursday night.
The other murders include PC Ronan Kerr, who was killed by an under-car bomb in Omagh in 2011.
The group is also linked to the deaths of prison officers David Black, who was shot as he drove to work at Maghaberry Prison in 2012, and Adrian Ismay, who died in 2016 after a bomb exploded under his van outside his home in east Belfast.
The New IRA is believed to have been formed between 2011 and 2012 following the merger of a number of smaller groups, including the Real IRA – the group behind the 1998 Omagh bomb.
It is strongest in Derry, north and west Belfast, Strabane in Co Derry, Lurgan in Co Armagh, and pockets of Tyrone.
This year, the group was responsible for a car bomb outside the courthouse in Bishop Street, Derry.
The explosives-laden car was left on the city centre street on a Saturday night in January, and scores of people, including a group of teenagers, had walked past before it detonated.
The New IRA also claimed a number of package bombs were posted to targets in London and Glasgow in March.
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