Hundreds attend vigils in Dublin and Belfast in memory of Brianna Ghey

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Hundreds of people have taken part in vigils in memory of 16-year-old Brianna Ghey in Dublin and Belfast.

In Dublin, people gathered at The Spire on O’Connell Street, while in Belfast they came together at the front of the City Hall.

Protesters carried placards reading “Rest in Power” and “Trans Rights Now”.

Brianna, who was a transgender girl from Birchwood in Warrington, was found by members of the public as she lay with fatal stab wounds on a path in Culcheth Linear Park at around 3.13pm on Saturday.

Two teenagers charged with her murder were remanded into custody by a district judge on Wednesday.

People attending the Belfast vigil held posters reading ‘Rest in Power’ (Jonathan McCambridge/PA)

Academic and LGBTQ activist Ailbhe Smyth described the teenager as “strong and fearless”.

She said: “She was only 16. She was on the cusp between girlhood and womanhood, that very delicate and also very wonderful moment.

“I felt her family’s grief so much when they said in their beautiful statement about the death of their daughter.

“They said she was strong, fearless and one of a kind. I thought of that young woman and how brave she had been in her life to say I am a trans woman.”

Brianna Ghey death
A pictures of Brianna Ghey, as members of the public attend a candle-lit vigil at the Spire on O’Connell Street in Dublin (Brian Lawless/PA)

“She deserves recognition, she deserves respect and she deserves to be alive today.”

In Belfast, many of those who attended the vigil carried photographs of Brianna.

Leo Lardie from the Rainbow Project addresses the Belfast rally (Jonathan McCambridge/PA

“There are no words to describe how hopelessly tragic and keenly painful the senseless death of a young girl like Brianna is.

“We are here tonight to show our deepest sympathies for her family, friends and the trans and non-binary community of the UK all of whom are left bereft by her sudden death.

“The UK can feel like an increasingly frightening place for trans and non-binary people to exist.”

Alliance representative on Belfast City Council Micky Murray said the death of Brianna was being felt by the trans community right across the world.

He said: “I hope this event brings comfort but I also think it brings a level of discomfort.

“Obviously we don’t want to have events like this, we don’t want to have to stand here to protest and to hold vigils.”

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