THE 'NEW IRA' has admitted responsibility for the murder of Belfast journalist Lyra McKee.
Speaking in a statement given to The Irish News, the group offered "full and sincere apologies" to the family and friends of the 29-year-old.
Ms McKee was shot dead while reporting on riots in the Fanad Drive region of Creggan in Derry last Thursday, April 18th.
The writer was rushed to the nearby Altnagelvin Hospital but died shortly after as a result of her wounds.
In the wake of her death, police said they believed the New IRA were responsible for the killing. Those claims have now been confirmed by the paramilitary group, which was formed in 2012.
"In the course of attacking the enemy Lyra McKee was tragically killed while standing beside enemy forces,” the New IRA’s statement read.
"The IRA offer our full and sincere apologies to the partner, family and friends of Lyra McKee for her death."
Despite offering an apology, the statement, signed T O’Neill, also accused the police of “provoking” the riots thatg lead to McKee’s death.
"On Thursday night following an incursion on the Creggan by heavily armed British crown forces which provoked rioting, the IRA deployed our volunteers to engage," it said.
"We have instructed our volunteers to take the utmost care in future when engaging the enemy and put in place measures to help ensure this."
Ms McKee was from North Belfast but had moved to Derry to live with her partner Sara Canning.