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Man shot dead in busy Belfast clubhouse as people watched football on TV

The incident happened at the clubhouse of Donegal Celtic Football Club on the Suffolk Road in west Belfast.

PSNI officers at the scene of a shooting in Donegal Celtic football club
PSNI officers at the scene of a shooting in Donegal Celtic football club
Image: PA

Updated Oct 2nd 2022, 6:00 PM

THE PSNI HAS launched a murder investigation after a man was shot dead in a busy football clubhouse in Belfast.

Two masked men entered the premises, where people were watching football on TV, and shot the man several times.

He was pronounced dead at the scene. PSNI Detective Chief Inspector John Caldwell said that both gunmen are believed to have made their escape on foot along Suffolk Road.

“The investigation is at a very early stage and I would urge to anyone with information or anyone who was in the Suffolk Road area at the time the shooting took place and seen two men running from the club or who may have captured dashcam footage to contact us on 101 quoting reference number 1120 02/10/22.”

There was a heavy police presence at the scene in the aftermath.

donegal-celtic-incident Source: PA

Two ambulances were parked in the grounds while a PSNI helicopter hovered above. A significant number of officers were in attendance, with the area cordoned off.

Sinn Fein MP for West Belfast Paul Maskey said the community was in shock.

“There’s total shock in this community today with the offence that happened in Donegal Celtic today,” he said as he visited the scene.

“My thoughts and sympathies are with this man’s family.

“I personally don’t know the victim but what I do know is that there’s a family there and our thoughts and our sympathies are with this man’s family at this stage.”

Mr Maskey urged anyone with information to come forward to police.

“I condemn those responsible. There is no place for guns on our streets,” he said.

SDLP councillor Brian Heading said: “This incident has cast a dark cloud over the entire area, people in this community want to be able to live their lives in peace and this shooting in broad daylight in a busy establishment must be condemned in the strongest possible terms by all.

“People are rightly concerned at the presence of gunmen on our streets and I would urge anyone who knows anything about this shooting to come forward to police as soon as possible. We need these people apprehended to protect the community and ensure that nothing like this happens again.”

The PSNI said that part of Suffolk Road is closed and a number of diversions are in place.

Additional reporting by PA

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