Loyalist bid to ‘cleanse’ Derry’s Waterside


Five Catholic and mixed families have been forced out of their homes in Derry amid a pogrom by loyalist paramilitaries in the predominately Protestant Waterside area of the city.

In one incident, shots were fired into the home of a young Catholic mother on Saturday night. Her one-year-old daughter was asleep upstairs when two shots were fired through the living room window.

The woman’s boyfriend, who is also Catholic, said the bullets narrowly missed him and a friend as they sat watching television. He said his girlfriend had been “warned” warned about bringing Catholics into the area after moving there six months ago.

One neighbour said that the gunmen could have easily killed the baby girl.

“The people who did this fired two shots in the window and could have killed this child as she lay sleeping,” she said. “It would be very traumatic for that mother and that baby to have come through this and some of the neighbours are completely traumatised by this attack.”

Sinn Fein councillor Christopher Jackson said there had beren a clear attempt to kill.

“I want to get the message out that the vast majority of people in the Waterside are disgusted by this and there’s a lot of good work going on to bring the communities together,” he said. “But we need people to step up to the mark so that these thugs have no hiding place.”

He has already helped to rehouse four Catholic and mixed religion families since August 11, when a Catholic man and his Protestant wife and children fled their home after they were given 24 hours to leave.

A further attack took place on Monday, when a pipe bomb was thrown at the home of a Catholic man living in the Clooney estate. The elderly man, Andy Logue (62), has been forced to take temporary shelter in a community centre.

The victim, who is originally from County Donegal, said he reported a broken window but was then told he had been the target of a failed bomb attack. He believed those behind the attack intended throwing the device into his home but it dropped short.

He said: “I was in having a cup of tea with my neighbours and the next thing the police said you better get up against that wall there because we found a device. And we’re up here (Lincoln Courts community centre) since.”

The Irish Republican Socialist Party in Derry City said such attacks were “nothing new” to the Waterside. Derry City IRSP spokesperson Danny Morrison said: “These attacks are carried out by mainstream loyalist elements in either the UDA and UVF, they have become predictable and normal practice.

“Gun and bomb attacks carried out with impunity, under the cover of darkness, terrorising families and pushing a sectarian, right-wing and racist agenda.”

“Going back to 2014, and long before that, there was racist pipe bomb attacks on Romanian families, racist graffiti, sectarian gun and pipe bomb attacks all done to ethnically cleanse PUL [loyalist] areas.

Mr Morrison concluded: “The IRSP are calling on those responsible for these sectarian and racist attacks to immediately cease their activities before someone gets killed.”

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