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Ex-IRA commander shot dead in Belfast; was key figure in notorious 2005 pub attack on civilian

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DUBLIN (AP) — Police in Northern Ireland say a former Irish Republican Army commander linked to one of the outlawed group's most notorious killings was shot to death at close range this morning on a street near his home in Belfast.

Jock Davison was a Belfast IRA commander in 2005 when he allegedly ordered IRA comrades to attack a man at a Belfast pub following an exchange of insults. Robert McCartney was fatally stabbed. The attack happened in front of dozens of witnesses, but nobody was ever successfully prosecuted amid claims of IRA intimidation.

Davison was arrested on suspicion of ordering the killing but not charged. Two others, including his uncle, were charged with McCartney's murder but acquitted in 2008.

McCartney's widow, his mother and four sisters took their demands for justice all the way to the White House, winning support from Hillary Clinton and the late Sen. Edward Kennedy. The campaign helped spur the IRA to renounce violence and disarm later that year.

No group has claimed responsibility for Davison's killing today.

APPHOTO XBFT104: Police and ambulance crews at the scene of a fatal shooting in the Markets area of South Belfast, Northern Ireland, Tuesday, May 5, 2015, where former senior IRA man Gerard "Jock" Davison was gunned down early Tuesday outside his home. Davison was a Belfast IRA commander when he allegedly ordered IRA comrades in 2005 to kill Robert McCartney, in a killing which prompted relatives to seek justice and is widely seen as an act which eventually helped spur the IRA to renounce violence. (AP Photo/Peter Morrison) (5 May 2015)

<<APPHOTO XBFT104 (05/05/15)££

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