Page last updated at 12:57 GMT, Wednesday, 4 November 2009

Held at gunpoint as brother shot

Kitty Dalzell said she has no idea why her son was targeted

The mother of a man shot in Londonderry on Tuesday has told how gunmen held her 14-year-old daughter and friends at gunpoint while they shot her son.

Five men wearing scarves entered the house in Iniscarn Crescent in Creggan at about 2000 GMT on Tuesday.

Tony Dalzell, 23, was shot five times and is now undergoing surgery.

His mother Kitty said she has no idea why her son was targeted. "Nobody has the right to come into somebody's house and shoot them," she said.

Mrs Dalzell said a bullet went through the ceiling and ricocheted off a radiator when they shot her son in his bedroom.

"Why can they not just come in here bare-faced and say what they're doing and why they're doing it?

"Nobody has the legal right to hold a gun in this town, only the police," she said.

The victim's other sister, Brenda, said the house looked "like a murder scene".

"It was scary. His mouth started to dry up and he was freezing, and I actually thought he was dying.

"Who gives anybody the right to come into somebody's house and shoot them?

"Who gives them the right to come in and hold a gun to a 14-year-old's head?"

Tony Dalzell
Tony Dalzell was shot five times in the legs

Local residents have blamed the attack on a group known as Republican Action Against Drugs.

The group has been blamed for 12 similar attacks in the city in the past year.

Parish priest Father Stephen McLaughlin said those responsible were showing contempt for the community.

"There are children now going to school this morning, and the topic of news in school will be the man that was shot beside us in our street.

"That's the kind of experience that's been foisted on children growing up, and I really wonder, is that the kind of healthy environment we want to create for the children of today?

"Surely they deserve something better than what's being imposed by this shadowy group," he said.

Sinn Fein councillor Patricia Logue condemned the attack.

"This has not worked in the past and it certainly won't work in the future.

"The people of Derry no longer want their social problems dealt with in this manner."

An hour later, a 24-year-old man was injured in a similar attack in west Belfast.

He was shot in a house on the Rossnareen Road in Andersonstown by a masked gang.

His nine-year-old niece was in the house at the time.

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