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Sinn Féin to raise Portadown loyalist protest concerns with PSNI

1 December, 2009 - by John O'Dowd

Sinn Féin MLA John O’ Dowd and Portadown Sinn Féin Councillor Brian McKeown are to meet senior PSNI officers in Portadown to discuss community concerns as to how the loyalist demonstration in Portadown town centre was handled by the PSNI. 

Speaking after loyalist gangs were allowed to run amok in the centre on Portadown at the weekend, Sinn Féin MLA John O'Dowd said the PSNI need to act immediately to apprehend those responsible.
Speaking today Mr O'Dowd said;

“I am alarmed that the organisers of last weekend’s sectarian mob are threatening to repeat their violence this weekend again.

“We want to meet the PSNI to ensure that last weekend’s events and the policing mistakes are not repeated and that the PSNI do not allow mobs to take control of Portadown town centre.
"Trouble as we saw at the weekend must not be allowed to take place at all, let alone in such a blatant and open fashion, particularly given the fact that the PSNI had advanced knowledge of potential sectarian violence.
“The days of Loyalism turning places like Portadown into their personal sectarian playgrounds must end. We have seen in Portadown and more recently in Coleraine, the deadly effects of this approach.

“I would call on the leaders of Unionism to use their influence to ensure that we do not witness a repeat of weekend events.” CRIOCH

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