Friend of murdered journalist Lyra McKee calls on politicians to ‘come together’ for Northern Ireland
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Friend of murdered journalist Lyra McKee calls on politicians to ‘come together’ for Northern Ireland

A CLOSE friend of murdered journalist Lyra McKee has called on politicians in Northern Ireland to come together to affect real change in the region.

Sinead Quinn was among those to place red paint handprints outside Saoradh’s Derry headquarters in the wake of the 29-year-old’s death.

It came as part of a protest against the political wing of the New IRA and their role in the shooting of Ms McKee during riots in Creggan, Derry, last Thursday.

The New IRA has already accepted responsibility for her death as part of an apology issued to the friends and family of the slain journalist.

Ms McKee’s funeral is set to take place at St Anne’s Cathedral in Belfast this Wednesday, April 24th, at 1pm President Michael D Higgins and Tanaiste Simon Coveney among the thousands set to attend.

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But while Ms Quinn believes it is “wonderful” to see politicians paying their respects, they need to do more to help Northern Ireland – something she believes Ms McKee would have wanted.

“An apology without actual positive action means nothing,” she told the Irish Mirror.

“At this stage we think that in terms of the politicians it was wonderful to see them come together for a few moments in Creggan but it’s time they come together now on the regular issues.

Floral tributes to Lyra McKee at the spot where she was killed in Derry's Creggan estate last Thursday (Image: Paul Faith/AFP/Getty Images)

“It’s time they come together and realise as a population we deserve a lot more and that’s what Lyra would have wanted.

“She would have been glad to see them stand there, she’d have been proud to know that her horrendously, disgusting death led to that moment.

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“However, she also would have been saying ‘right guys, what’s next?’ and that’s what we are saying to our politicians now too.”

A 57-year-old woman was arrested on Tuesday in connection with Lyra’s murder.

She was arrested under the Terrorism Act and questioned at Musgrave Serious Crime Suite.

She was released on Tuesday evening.

The PSNI said: "Detectives from PSNI Major Investigation Team continue to appeal for help from the local community in Creggan or anyone with information."