Wednesday, March 17, 1999 Published at 22:44 GMT
Loyalist feud looms after killing
A boy looks down at the body of Frankie Curry, murdered near the Shankill Road
A renegade loyalist groupis threatening leaders of the Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF) in retaliation for the killing of a man gunned down in Belfast on Wednesday.
But on Wednesday night the renegade Red Hand Defenders - the same group who claimed responsibility for the killing of Catholic lawyer Rosemary Nelson on Monday - issued a statement blaming the UVF for Mr Curry's murder and threatening retaliation.
'Military action' promised
The group, who sprung up in the wake of the Good Friday Agreement, threatened "military action" against several named UVF leaders.
Threats were also made towards the UVF's political wing, the Progressive Unionist Party.
Mr Curry's body was found behind the Pony Trotting Supporters Sports and Social Club. He had been shot several times in the back of the head.
Mr Curry is known to have moved to Portadown, stronghold of the late Billy Wright, after his life was threatened.
He was expelled from the Red Hand Commando for "treason" but had recently been linked to dissident loyalist groups.
Ulster Democratic Party spokesman John White, who may have been the last person to speak to Mr Curry, also blamed loyalists.
"It's disgraceful that a man who dedicated his life to the loyalist cause should be cut down like this by people who call themselves loyalists," he said.
Mr Curry's mother collapsed and had to be taken to hospital after hearing of her son's death.
Appeal for restraint
Speaking to BBC News, Ulster Unionist MP Ken Maginnis said the continued violence in the province underlined the need for decommissioning of paramilitary weapons.
"The sooner that happens, there will be less fear, less mistrust and we can move ahead," he said. Speaking in Washington, Northern Ireland Secretary Mo Mowlam said: "This was an appalling killing as was the death of Rosemary Nelson. Killings like this serve no purpose."
Mrs Nelson was killed on Monday in a car bombing by a loyalist group called the Red Hand Defenders.
Wednesday's shooting was condemned by Sinn Fein leader Gerry Adams who is also in Washington for St Patrick's Day. He appealed for restraint, saying: "People have to make sure that the wreckers do not get their way."