Orange parade opposed in Derriaghy

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Plans by the Orange Order to hold a parade to “honour” a UDA member who carried out deadly sectarian attacks 25 years ago are creating tensions in southwest Belfast.

An Orange lodge plans to hold a memorial parade for Jim Guiney in the Derriaghy area, near Lisburn, on January 21, close to where he carried out his attacks, including the murder of a Catholic teenager.

A flute band and supporters are expected to take part in the parade, which will begin at Milltown shops before making its way to Derriaghy, Milltown Avenue and Milltown Crescent.

The Orange Order has been urged to rethink the planned parade by the mother of the murdered teenager.

Marian Walsh’s 17-year-old son Damien (pictured) was shot dead by the UDA as he worked at the Dairy Farm shopping centre near Twinbrook, also on the outskirts of west Belfast, in March 1993.

The parade will take place not far from where the teenager was killed and Ms Walsh has described the plan as “insensitive”.

“They are willing to do this for a UDA man, regardless of the fact that he is also an Orangeman, I mean, it’s approving whatever he did when he was in the UDA,” she said.

“I would urge them to rethink it because it’s sending out a message that they support paramilitarism.”

Sinn Féin councillor Gary McCleave said the demographics of the area have “changed massively”.

“There are people there from the Colin area who are well aware of what happened Damien,” he said. “As Ms Walsh said, it’s totally insensitive and there needs to be a rethink.”

Mr McCleave spoke to residents who are unhappy with the parade plan.

“With the change in demographics there I would say the majority of people living in the Milltown area wouldn’t want this at all, it’s creating tension in the area, which doesn’t need to happen,” he said.

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