By Jonathan McCambridge, PA
Mrs Justice Siobhan Keegan has been appointed as Northern Ireland’s first ever lady chief justice.
She will replace Sir Declan Morgan, who is to retire after 10 years as Lord Chief Justice.
Mrs Justice Keegan delivered the ruling last month that the 10 people killed in the west Belfast shootings involving soldiers in Ballymurphy in August 1971 were “entirely innocent”.
She attributed nine of the 10 shootings to the British Army and said the use of lethal force by soldiers was not justified.
The Queen has approved her appointment as lady chief justice of Northern Ireland.
She will be sworn into office at the start of September 2021 at a ceremony in the Royal Courts of Justice.
Mrs Justice Keegan was appointed as a High Court Judge in October 2015.
During her career Mrs Justice Keegan has served as vice chairwoman of the bar of Northern Ireland.
She was appointed as Judge in Residence at Queen’s University Belfast in November 2015 and currently remains in this post.
Mrs Justice Keegan was appointed as a coroner in July 2017 and was presiding coroner for Northern Ireland from September 2017 to September 2020.