Irish republican group Saoradh, believed by police to be tied to the “New IRA” dissident group, marched in military fatigues in Dublin on April 20, under two days after journalist Lyra McKee was fatally shot during riots in Derry, Northern Ireland.
The Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) said they suspected the New IRA, a group that formed in opposition to the Provisional IRA’s embrace of the peace process, was responsible for McKee’s death. Two men, aged 18 and 19, were arrested under the Terrorism Act on Saturday in connection with the shooting, police said.
Following McKee’s death, Saoradh issued a statement saying the shooting was “accidental” and that a “Republican Volunteer” was defending people from “Crown Forces.”
“The blame for last night lies squarely at the feet of the British Crown Forces, who sought to grab headlines and engineered confrontation with the community,” the group said.
The statement was met by widespread condemnation.
The Dublin march commemorated the Easter Rising of 1916, during which Irish rebel groups took control of various sites in Dublin. British forces responded with force, and executed several leaders without trial in the days that followed. The Easter Rising is seen as a defining moment in modern Irish republicanism. Saoradh and the New IRA consider themselves to be the natural continuation of traditional republicanism in Ireland, and reject the peace process. Credit: Saoradh Áth Cliath via Storyful