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death threat Graffiti threat targeting journalist appears in Belfast

Threat is the second to be spray-painted on Belfast walls targeting female journalists in the last fortnight

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Graffiti targeting Morris appeared in north Belfast

Graffiti targeting Morris appeared in north Belfast

Graffiti targeting Morris appeared in north Belfast

Threatening graffiti has appeared in Belfast targeting journalist Allison Morris.

The sinister message, which appeared in a nationalist area of north Belfast, appears to insinuate that Ms Morris is an MI5 agent and features a cross-hairs symbol.

It is the second graffiti threat towards Ulster journalists in recent days.

Last week daubings appeared in East Belfast targeting a Sunday world journalist.

Ms Morris, who has been on the receiving end of numerous serious death threats in recent years and who has been a journalist with the Irish News for over 15 years, as well as the newspaper's security correspondent, took to social media to post a tongue-in-cheek rebuff of the threat.

She posted on Twitter: ‘If anyone knows an Alison (sic) Moris (sic) tell her that her name is on a wall in Rosapenna Street – state of that wouldn’t you be scundered #idiots.’

The threat was roundly condemned by politicians and human rights advocates.

First Minister Arlene Foster took to social media to say: ‘Attempts to bully and intimidate Allison and other journalists are disgraceful. Such threats have no place in a democracy.’

Deputy First Minister Michelle O’Neill also condemned the threat, posting: ‘I see that more hate filled graffiti has been sprayed on walls targeting another female journalist. If only these brave misogynistic artists had an ounce of the courage of @AllisonMorris1 & @trishdevlin and every other woman going about her job.’

Patrick Corrigan of Amnesty International Northern Ireland said: ‘Paramilitary threats to journalists, whether delivered by police to your door or via gable walls, should *not* be ‘part and parcel’ of the profession.

‘Over time, this climate of fear has a chilling effect on press freedom and freedom of expression.’

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