Gun salute at funeral of Real IRA leader
08/09/2012 - 16:40:49
A volley of shots were fired over the coffin of murdered Real IRA boss Alan Ryan as he was given a full republican military funeral today.
The gun salute happened outside the family home of the terror leader in north Dublin before hundreds of supporters and associates escorted his coffin to a church.
There was a strong Garda presence around the Church of the Holy Trinity in Donaghmede as family and friends mourned the loss of the convicted dissident.
The atmosphere tensed at his burial in Balgriffin Cemetery, where armed gardaí and the riot squad were on patrol, but the service passed peacefully.
Meanwhile, detectives have continued to question a suspect in connection with the murder of the 32-year-old, who was gunned down on Monday afternoon.
RIRA members from as far as Derry, Cork and Tyrone travelled to Dublin for the service.
Six republicans dressed in military combat gear and covered faces fired a volley of shots outside the house before his remains were carried to the church, past black flags and tricolours hanging off lampposts.
Draped in the tricolour, the coffin was flanked by more than 200 supporters wearing the traditional republican uniform – a white shirt with black trousers and black tie.
Chief mourners included his mother Marion, partner Stacey, daughter Alannah and siblings Anthony, Niamh, Dermot, Eoin and Vincent.
The 32 County Sovereignty Movement (CSM), which is seen as the political wing of the RIRA, had condemned the “cowardly murder” of their friend, comrade and activist.
Outside the church, the men in military gear changed in to the ’uniform’ in a white van and were shield by associates to avoid arrest.
They changed again for the burial, where the graveside oration was given by well-known republican Colin Duffy.
Ryan was due to go on trial for an alleged extortion racket and threatening a city-centre publican and making him cease trading within 24 hours.
He was previously jailed for taking part in a RIRA weapons training camp in Meath in 2001 and served time for possession of a firearm in a separate incident.
He was one of the leaders of the RIRA in Dublin where, with other members, he had been trying to extort money from drugs gangs, as well as legitimate businesses across the capital.
The 32 CSM had claimed that Ryan had worked tirelessly to tackle the scourge of drugs.
Detectives are trying to establish if a number of gangs joined forces and organised and paid for his murder in the Grange Lodge estate in Clongriffin.
A suspect in his 40s was arrested on Thursday night and can be held for up to three days.
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