Detectives today renewed their appeal for information to help solve the murder of two soldiers, and the attempted murder of three soldiers and two civilians at Massereene army barracks in Antrim on this 10th anniversary of the atrocity.
Sappers Mark Quinsey and Patrick Azimkar were shot dead outside the barracks on Saturday, 7th March 2009.
Two of their colleagues were also injured in the attack, as were two civilians delivering pizza to the base. Another soldier, who was close by, narrowly escaped injury.
Detective Chief Superintendent Raymond Murray said: “Our thoughts today are very much with the families of Sappers Mark Quinsey and Patrick Azimkar whose ongoing grief, pain and hurt must be unimaginable.
“It is also a poignant day for those who were injured and maimed and now live with the physical and psychological scars of that fateful attack.
“It is our appeal today that anyone who has information about the attack and those who carried it out would come to the police with that information which may open up new lines of enquiry.
“One person has been convicted for offences involved in the murder by providing the phone used to make calls claiming the attack, however, it is the killers themselves who we want to bring before the court.”
“The investigation has been long and complex. To date it has generated:
· 4,062 investigative actions
· 1,858 witness statements
· 33 searches
· 14 arrests
“Today, on the 10th anniversary, I would appeal to those who know anything about the events of that night to come forward to police.
“Lives have been brutally taken and the lives of their loved ones changed forever. It is up to us all to work together to ensure that the tragedies of our past do not become the tragedies of the future.
“There are people in the community who know exactly what happened and who was involved. A decade has passed and with that allegiances change and people’s circumstances alter. It is never too late to come forward.”
“The Azimkar and Quinsey families are facing yet another year without their loved ones and they deserve to see those involved brought to justice.”
Anyone with information should contact detectives in the Major Investigation Team on 101 or if you would prefer to give information anonymously call Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.
Antrim Traditional Unionist Voice representative Richard Cairns, in a statement to ‘Ballymena Daily’, said:
“Today marks 10 years since the callous murders of Sappers Patrick Azimkar and Mark Quinsey at the hands of republican terrorists.
“First and foremost, my thoughts and prayers are with the families at this time, as they remember their loved ones who were taken from them.
“It is also a stark reminder that after 10 years there has been no justice for the families. Justice should not be time limited, nor should it be politically expedient not to pursue the victim makers. With advances in forensics, there is always the possibility of delivering justice.
“The murders also had a profound impact on Antrim town. It united people across the entire community who were outraged at the depravity of those who would seek to bring murder to the town.
“Just as Antrim today remembers Sappers Patrick Azimkar and Mark Quinsey, so the town will continue to honour and remember their names in the years to come.”