Sinn Féin MLA Carál Ní Chuilín said tonight that today’s Black Preceptory parade showed total disrespect to peaceful protestors and mass goers at St Patrick’s Church. And the North Belfast MLA said the parade had flouted every legal restriction placed on it by the Parades Commission.
The North Belfast MLA said it was long past time that the loyal orders got into a genuine dialogue with nationalist residents.
“I am fed up hearing about Loyal Orders being religious organisations celebrating culture,” said Carál Ní Chuilín, “when in reality what was on show today was an exercise in sectarian coat trailing through a Nationalist area.
“Today a member of the Royal Black Institution spat upon a protestor and on the way home they waited until mass had started before returning past St Patrick’s Church.
“Every aspect of the determination in relation to this parade was broken today and it is my opinion it was an effort to goad Nationalist residents into some type of retaliatory action.
“I would like to praise those residents for their resolute discipline in face of immense provocation.”
Ms. Ní Chuilín said she would be in contact with the Parades Commission about the breaches of its legally binding determination.
“I will also be raising the behaviour of the participants of the Black Preceptory march with both the PSNI and the Parades Commission,” said Carál Ní Chuilín.
“If the Loyal orders are serious about getting a resolution to contentious parades then they must engage in genuine dialogue with the local residents groups.
“The days of Nationalists being treated as second-class citizens are gone and they’re not coming back and these issues will only be resolved through real and meaningful dialogue as equal citizens.”