Vigils held around Ireland for murdered men as Garda investigate hate-related motive

Vigils held around Ireland for murdered men as Garda investigate hate-related motive

VIGILS have been held around Ireland following the murder of two men in Sligo this week.

The body of Aidan Moffitt, 42, was found in his home at Cartron Heights in Sligo at 8.30pm on Monday.

Just over 24 hours later, the body of Mchael Snee, 58, was found at his home at Connaughton Road, Sligo.

Both men had sustained a serious physical assault and had suffered significant injuries.

Michael Snee and Aidan Moffitt (Images: An Garda Síochána)

A 22-year-old man has been charged with their murders, as well as a separate assault.

Speaking earlier this week, Garda Chief Superintendent Aidan Glacken said they were investigating whether there was a hate-related motive behind the killings.

Vigils outside Dáil Éireann in Dublin, City Hall in Belfast and Town Hall in Sligo were just some of the many demonstrations held across Ireland on Friday night.

Further vigils took place on Saturday, including in Donegal, Galway and Wicklow, as well as at the Irish Centre in London.

Speaking at a vigil in Dundalk on Friday evening, Sinn Féin TD Ruairí Ó Murchú TD said there was no room for hate in Ireland and that people had to work together to make the country more inclusive.

"We all have to reassess where society is," said the TD for Louth.

"We all thought we were through all these sorts of problems, that we were in a new Ireland.

"It is a lot better than it was but it's not where it needs to be."

Labour Senator Mark Wall attended a vigil in Athy, Co. Kildare on Friday.

Writing on social media afterwards, he said: "Homophobia in all its forms and violence targeted against anyone because of their sexual orientation should never be tolerated.

"It has no place in our society."

At a vigil on Dublin on Friday, Dr Umar Al-Qadri of the Irish Muslim Peace & Integration Council praised people for coming together to face the 'shadow of tragedy and fear'.

"We come here to attest to our togetherness, to tell the world that we will face down the cruel dehumanisation and otherisation of LGBTQI people together, that we will beat homophobia together," he said.

Further vigils are planned for Monday, including at Bishop Lacey Park in Cork, The Square in Tralee, Kerry, Arthur's Quay in Limerick and at Arklow Bandstand in Wicklow.

All the demonstrations are due to get under way at 6pm.