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O'Broin - Belfast City Council must now act over flying of union flag

8 October, 2003

Sinn Féin Councillor for north Belfast, Eoin O'Broin has stated today that Belfast City Council must act now on the issue of the flying of the Union Flag 365 days a year. This follows the completion of an internal equality impact assessment, which has stated that the council could face legal action if the issue is not resolved satisfactorily.

Speaking today Cllr O'Broin said:

"It is Sinn Féin view that under the equality legislation the issue of the flying of the Union flag must be dealt with as a matter of urgency.

"It has taken two years to arrive at a position which everybody knew at the start. That is that there is no legal defence for the current policy, the current policy conflicts with Belfast City Councils own equality scheme and good relations guidelines and that change has to happen.

"The majority of parties want change and Sinn Féin is calling on the city council to take a decision on this issue without delay.

" Sinn Féin's position is a matter of record. Our preferred option is for both the Irish Tricolour and the Union flag to fly from Belfast city hall in recognition of both the nationalist and unionist communities. If this is not possible we would then favour neutrality, implying the removal of all flags." ENDS

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