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City Hall riot must not be allowed to happen again - Cllr McVeigh

4 December, 2012

Sinn Féin Councillor and party group leaders, Jim McVeigh, has stated that unionism must face up to its responsibilities in taking people onto the streets and ensure that the scenes witnessed outside Belfast City Hall last night must not be allowed to happen again.

Speaking today Mr McVeigh said: 

“The scenes at City Hall last night are to be condemned outright and are a disgrace.

“Those who came to the City Hall came with the intent to create trouble. Fireworks, bricks, golf balls and bolt cutters were taken to the gates of the city hall and used against a wholly inadequate PSNI presence.

“Staff were attacked, windows in City Hall were smashed and cars in the car park were vandalised. Following this the same crowd attacked homes in Short Strand and St Mathews church.

“It is very clear that political unionism raised the stakes in this debate. Given that they delivered over 40,000 leaflets selectively across Belfast calling for people to mobilise against this council motion they cannot hide from their responsibility.

“There is no justification for the violence last night and unionism must be careful in further debates to show leadership and ensure this cannot be allowed to happen again.”

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