Shots fired on Northern Ireland border: “It is a reminder that we are still plagued by those who are intent on murder…dark days which we all want to put behind us.”YouTube

Three gunmen, wearing masks, opened fire into a van, in Belleek, County Fermanagh. The Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) are investigating whether there is any dissident republican links to the shooting.

The three gunmen escaped into the Republic of Ireland. The PSNI are working closely with the Gardai Síochána (Irish police).

The incident took place just outside the Carlton hotel, on the Main Street of a small border village, just before 9.30am (local time) on Tuesday. The armed men, wearing balaclavas, shot at least one shot into a van. It is believed the vehicle is owned by a local contractor, who is currently working on the hotel.

Police were not able to release information on whether there was someone in the van at the time, what kind of contractor the man works as, and what kind of weapon was used in the attack.

Carlton hotel, in Belleek.

Carlton hotel, in Belleek.

The PSNI report that no one was injured in the shooting, although people were left badly shaken by the violent attack. The police, on both sides of the border are appealing to the public for any information they may have on the incident.

Ulster Unionist Member of Parliament for Fermanagh and South Tyrone, Tom Elliott condemned those responsible. He said “Belleek is a quiet Fermanagh border village and this incident will have come as a complete shock to the local community.

“It is a reminder that we are still plagued by those who are intent on murder, attempted murder and disruption, and of dark days which we all want to put behind us.”

Belleek, in County Fermanagh, just on the border of County Donegal. The small town with a population of just 836 is no stranger to violence. During the Troubles the border town witnessed eight fatalities between 1972 and 1992.

Chief Inspector Graham Dodds, of the PSNI, told the Guardian “I would appeal to anyone who may have noticed any suspicious activity in the area or anyone who has any information about this incident to contact police at Enniskillen on the non-emergency 101 number, quoting reference number 272 02/07/16. Alternatively, if you prefer to provide information without giving details, please contact the independent charity Crimestoppers and speak to them anonymously on 0800555111.”