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'Lives were brutally taken': Appeal on 10th anniversary of killing of soldiers in Co Antrim

Sappers Mark Quinsey and Patrick Azimkar were killed outside the Massereene army barracks on 7 March 2009.

Soldiers shot dead Brigadier George Norton looking at the flowers left outside Massereene Army base in 2009 Source: Paul Faith via PA Images

DETECTIVES IN NORTHERN IRELAND are appealing for information to help solve the murder of two soldiers at the Massereene army barracks in Co Antrim in 2009. 

Today marks the 10th anniversary of the atrocity, which also saw the attempted murder of three soldiers and two civilians. 

Sappers Mark Quinsey and Patrick Azimkar were shot dead outside the barracks on Saturday, 7 March 2009. 

Two of their colleagues were also injured in the attack, as were two civilians delivering pizza to the base.

Another soldier, who was close by, narrowly escaped injury. 

To date, the PSNI’s investigation has resulted in 4,062 investigative actions, 1,858 witness statements, 33 searches and 14 arrests. 

One person has been convicted for offences involved in the murder by providing the phone used to make calls claiming the attack. However, the killers have not been caught.

Soldiers shot dead Police at the scene of a shooting at Massereene Barracks in Antrim the day after the day Source: Paul Faith via PA Images

“Our thoughts today are very much with the families of Sappers Mark Quinsey and Patrick Azimkar whose ongoing grief, pain and hurt must be unimaginable,” Detective Chief Superintendent Raymond Murray said. 

“It is also a poignant day for those who were injured and maimed and now live with the physical and psychological scars of that fateful attack,” he said. 

The PSNI is today appealing that anyone who has information about the attack and those who carried it out would come to the police with information which may open up new lines of enquiry.

“Today, on the 10th anniversary, I would appeal to those who know anything about the events of that night to come forward to police,” Murray said.

Soldiers shooting Geraldine and Mehmet Azimkar, parents of Sapper Patrick Azimkar Source: Stefan Rousseau via PA Images

Lives have been brutally taken and the lives of their loved ones changed forever. It is up to us all to work together to ensure that the tragedies of our past do not become the tragedies of the future. 

“There are people in the community who know exactly what happened and who was involved. A decade has passed and with that allegiances change and people’s circumstances alter. It is never too late to come forward,” he said. 

The Azimkar and Quinsey families are facing yet another year without their loved ones and they deserve to see those involved brought to justice. 

Anyone with information should contact detectives in the PSNI major investigation team on 101. Alternatively, people can anonymously call UK Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

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