Irish Republican News · January 17, 2015
[Irish Republican News]

[Irish Republican News]
Sectarian attack in Derry


A teenage Catholic girl was knocked unconscious following an apparent sectarian assault on New Year’s Eve in Claudy, County Derry.

Gemma Hasson says she was knocked out on the dancefloor of a bar in the village and then carried outside, where she was again assaulted, along with her boyfriend.

She suffered serious cuts and bruising to her face and body as well as internal injuries which caused her to pass blood for two days. Her boyfriend sustained a broken nose in the attack. It was the second time she was targeted in just over a year.

“I’m too afraid to remain here now and I’m moving out back to Eglinton where I grew up,” she said.

In September 2013, Ms Hasson suffered torn tissue to her hand when she was assaulted by the same man, who she said called her a ‘Fenian’. On New Year’s Eve, the same man approached her while in the pub with friends.

“He just lifted his fist and hit me on my eye and knocked me out. When I woke up I was lying in a heap outside,” she said.

“As we walked away we were approached by the same attacker and another man. He called ‘that’s him’ and the other man punched my boyfriend and kicked him on the ground. They started to kick him in the head so I curled up over him to stop them,” she said.

“The next day I was very sore and they must have kicked me in the back because I was passing blood for a couple of days.”

Derry Sinn Fein councillor Paul Fleming said that anyone with information about the incident should come forward.

“The bottom line is two grown men attacked a young 18-year-old woman. They must be brought to justice,” he said.


Meanwhile, loyalists in south Belfast have been blamed for forcing a Chinese family from their home in a petrol bomb attack.

The incident in the Windsor area followed two other hate crimes in the nearby Village area.

The front window of the woman’s house on Ebor Street was smashed but the petrol bomb, which failed to ignite, did not make it into the living room.

The woman was too traumatised to speak of her ordeal.

In a similar type of incident, shortly after midnight on Monday, two ground-floor windows and one upstairs window were smashed at a house on Monarch Parade in south Belfast. Graffiti reading ‘Scum out locals only’ was daubed on the door.

The hate crimes in south Belfast follow on from a spate of racist attacks carried out in east Belfast, directed mainly at Polish and Romanian immigrants. In one of the worst cases, a young Romanian man was showered with a bag of excrement. A gang also carried out a series of racist attacks in north Belfast in September.

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