Irish Republican News · November 15, 2007
[Irish Republican News]

[Irish Republican News]
IRISH REPUBLICAN NEWS: UDA renegades mount attacks
UDA renegades mount attacks

Nationalist homes at a north Belfast interface came under attack from a sectarian gang just hours after statements were read by leading UDA paramilitary members at Remembrance Day commemorations.

Windows were smashed in two homes along the Serpentine Road and six cars damaged when up to five men entered the area in the early hours of Monday.

The gang, who local people said shouted “up the UFF” as they fled, were said to be in their early twenties.

Interface worker Gerard O’Reilly said it was the most serious sectarian problem in the Whitewell area in recent times.

“Unfortunately there will always be a small number of people from both communities who are intent on causing confrontation,” he said.

“This highlights the need for effective policing - there are security cameras in the area and if there is evidence then the people responsible should be arrested taken before the courts.”

Whitewell resident Orla Murphy woke to find that three cars parked in the driveway of the home she shares with her sister and a friend had been attacked. The damage was estimated at around #3,500.

“It sickens me that these thugs run around in the middle of the night causing destruction and then were probably in their bed this morning while the rest of us were dealing with this,” she said.

“We’ve never had any bother before and thankfully the house didn’t get hit but the shock of the whole thing was very distressing.”

Sinn Fein councillor Tierna Cunningham appealed for unionist political representatives to show leadership.

“It seems that the element involved were at least unhappy with Sunday’s UDA statement and wanted to demonstrate this by attacking Catholics in a vulnerable area,” she said.

“Sinn Fein has worked tirelessly across North Belfast, and in the Whitewell / White City areas in particular, to ensure a peaceful existence for all residents. Community and interface workers from White City have not been found wanting in working to the same end.

“However we are not witnessing the same level of commitment by Unionist politicians. I am therefore calling for representatives of the DUP and UUP in the area to show some positive leadership in bringing this type of attack to an end. These attacks are wrong and must cease immediately.”

Meanwhile, Sinn Fein Assembly members Paul Butler and Jennifer McCann will lead a party delegation to meet the PSNI in Castlereagh PSNI Station on Friday at 2pm regarding the campaign of intimidation against Catholics in the Stoneyford and Kilultagh areas in the Lagan Valley area.

“The Catholic and nationalist people of Lagan Valley have been on the receiving end of a highly organised and sustained campaign of sectarian intimidation for many years,” said Mr Butler.

“We shall be strongly urging the PSNI to adequately deal with this situation.”

© 2007 Irish Republican News