Detectives are appealing for information following a report of a serious assault in east Belfast in the early hours of Friday, April 21.

Detective Sergeant McCartan said: "Shortly after 1.05am, a report was received that a man had been assaulted in the Belmont Avenue area.

"It was reported that he was approached by two men, wearing balaclavas, one of whom was armed with a firearm. The victim reported hearing a number of clicks when the suspect pointed the weapon at him.

"He was then struck in the face with the weapon before being taken to hospital for treatment to a serious facial injury, which has been described as life-changing.

"This was a vicious assault and our investigation is at an early stage as we work to establish the circumstances.

"I would appeal to anyone who was in the area at the time and saw anything to contact us on 101, quoting reference 78 of 21/4/23."

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