President of Ireland Michael D. Higgins has extended his sympathies to the family of British MP Sir David Amess, who was fatally stabbed while conducting a constituency surgery in Essex on Friday.
Higgins said that the Conservative MP was carrying out a fundamental role of a politician at the time of his death by helping his constituents.
"May I express my deepest sympathies to the family, friends, colleagues in Parliament and constituents of Sir David Amess, who was murdered while carrying out that most fundamental act of a politician, meeting with his constituents, assisting them with their issues," Higgins said in a statement.
"All of those who value representative politics will think also today of the family of the late Jo Cox, who was taken from her family in June 2016.
"I know that all those who serve the people of the United Kingdom will have been deeply affected by these two murders and on behalf of the Irish people, I send them our deepest sympathies."
The British-Irish Parliamentary Assembly (BIPA), which was due to meet in Westminster on Monday, has been canceled as a mark of respect for Amess.
BIPA meets twice a year to discuss issues of mutual interest for Ireland and the United Kingdom.
MP Andrew Rosindell and Irish TD Brendan Smith, the co-chairs of the Assembly, issued a joint statement paying tribute to Amess.
"Sir David Amess was an esteemed colleague, associate member and friend of the British-Irish Parliamentary Assembly and his loss has deeply shocked all of us."
Meanwhile, controversial loyalist activist and agitator Jamie Bryson has come under fire for using Amess's death to hit out at Sinn Féin.
In a widely condemned tweet, Bryson said: "Dreadful news. Important not to forget that previously MPs were also murdered by IRA terrorists, actions which SF endorse to this very day."
Dreadful news. Important not to forget that previously MPs were also murdered by IRA terrorists, actions which SF endorse to this very day. https://t.co/cby8lpSj7d— Jamie Bryson (@JamieBrysonCPNI) October 15, 2021
Dozens of angered Twitter users responded to Bryson's tweet, accusing him of using Amess's death to score political points.
They also called Bryson a hypocrite after he accused British activist Femi Oluwole of using Amess's death to pursue a "nasty political agenda".
"This poor man is dead only a matter of hours & this disgraceful agitator is already seeking to use his death in pursuit of his nasty political agenda. Hang your head in shame," Bryson wrote on Twitter, just hours before his own tweet was published.
This poor man is dead only a matter of hours & this disgraceful agitator is already seeking to use his death in pursuit of his nasty political agenda. Hang your head in shame @Femi_Sorry https://t.co/YwrI6D2j6H— Jamie Bryson (@JamieBrysonCPNI) October 15, 2021