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Loyalist attack on Short Strand part of wider campaign against vulnerable nationalist communites

20 August, 2005

Sinn Féin representative for East Belfast Deborah Devenny has this evening said that residents of the Short Strand district are 'sickened and disgusted by a week of attacks on the area by loyalist thugs'.

Speaking this evening Ms Devenny said:

"For this past week, the Short Strand has been under systematic attack by loyalists. This evening the situation has deteriorated further with the Old Firm Soccer game and a loyalist band parade on the Newtonards Road, contributory factors.

"The PSNI have once again demonstrated their unwillingness to deal with loyalist thugs intent upon intimidating the people of this area. The PSNI have absolutely no control over this situation and when challenged responded that they did not have the resources to deal with it. Furthermore, there are three security cameras in the area, which must have recorded events over these past days. It will be interesting to see if they are taken away and examined.

"This community is sickened and disgusted by a week long siege on this district. A barrage of ball-bearings, golf balls, bricks and bottles have rained down upon people and property. The political leadership of unionism and the Orange Order must face down these people. In a week when Sinn Féin launched a dossier outlining over 85 attacks upon nationalists in the summer months, unionist paramilitaries continue to orchestrate and participate in these attacks. Sinn Féin has appealed to unionist politicians who sit on forums and commissions with the leaders of the UVF and UDA to start using their influence to end these attacks." ENDS

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