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Heavy garda presence at Traveller funeral in Longford town

  • Fears of violence outbreak at funeral
  • Linked to ongoing feud between two Traveller factions

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A large garda armed presence is in situ in Longford town this afternoon amid fears of an outbreak of violence at a Traveller funeral.

A large garda armed presence is in situ in Longford town this afternoon amid fears of an outbreak of violence at a Traveller funeral.

A large garda armed presence is in situ in Longford town this afternoon amid fears of an outbreak of violence at a Traveller funeral.

A large garda armed presence was in situ in Longford town this afternoon amid fears of an outbreak of violence at a Traveller funeral.

Several officers from the GardaĆ­ Regional Support Unit (RSU) have been drafted into the county in a bid to ensure proceedings pass of without incident.

Those fears, at the funeral of 93-year-old Maureen Stokes, were exacerbated over the past 24 hours after a man was shot and another man sustained serious injuries in a suspected hatchet attack in Galway.

Both incidents which occurred in the wake of Mrs Stokes' removal, are being linked to an ongoing feud between two rivalling Traveller factions which also resulted in another man falling foul to a suspected acid attack.

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A large garda armed presence is in situ in Longford town this afternoon amid fears of an outbreak of violence at a Traveller funeral.

A large garda armed presence is in situ in Longford town this afternoon amid fears of an outbreak of violence at a Traveller funeral.

They follow similarly violent scenes almost 12 months earlier when a man was left fighting for his life in hospital in the aftermath of a car ramming incident in Ballymahon.

The victim sustained a stab wound in that incident shortly after a religious ceremony had been held to mark the anniversary mass of John 'Dodie' Stokes, a son of the late Mrs Stokes.

It's been revealed close to 60 officers are on standby for this morning's funeral proceedings at St Mel's Cathedral ahead of burial to Ballymacormack Cemetery.

Among them include members from the Garda Air Support Unit, Dog Unit, Public Order Unit as well as uniformed and detective branch members.

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