Gardaí have issued an appeal for witnesses after a six-year-old boy was shot in the neck in Ballyfermot last night.

The boy is in a stable and non life-threatening condition.

The boy was taken to Our Lady's Children's Hospital in Crumlin, where he is being treated for his injuries.

The firearm used in the incident has not been found, gardaí believe it may be a pellet gun.

It is believed that the boy was not the intended target and that gardaí have a definite line of inquiry.

Gardaí administered first aid on the child until the arrival of the ambulance.

The boy, who was conscious at the time, was taken to Our Lady's Children's Hospital in Crumlin. 

An appeal has been made for witnesses or anyone with information to contact Ballyfermot Garda Station on 01 6667200.

Minister for Justice Frances Fitzgerald has condemned the shooting as "barbaric".

She said: "I share the shock of the community in Ballyfermot at the appalling shooting of a child last night.  

"The thoughts and prayers of everyone will be for the recovery of the child. 

"Acting Commissioner Noirin O'Sullivan has assured me that the Ggrdaí are making significant progress with their inquiries and that they are determined to bring to justice those involved in perpetrating this dreadful incident."