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Sinn Féin meets Policing Ombudsman

20 July, 2004

Sinn Féin Assembly member for North Belfast Gerry Kelly along with party colleagues Kathy Stanton MLA and Cllr. Danny Lavery today met with the Police Ombudsman to discuss the PSNI policing of last weeks Ardoyne Parade. The delegation asked the Ombudsman to investigate the entire PSNI operation and in particular the decision to force a UDA mob through the area. Mr Kelly also asked for an assault on him by the PSNI resulting in a broken wrist to also be investigated.

Speaking after the meeting Mr Kelly said:

"Last weekend in Ardoyne the PSNI overturned a Parades Commission determination and forced a UDA mob through three nationalist areas in North Belfast. Obviously Paul Murphy has to bear the responsibility for this. But the fact remains that he was being advised by the securocrats within the NIO and their influence could clearly be seen in the brutal tactics adopted by the PSNI against the nationalist community.

"The PSNI operation hemmed in the nationalist community in Ardoyne. Its purpose was to force an anti-Catholic parade along with leading unionist paramilitaries through a number of catholic areas. This is not acceptable policing.

"We have asked the Ombudsman to mount a full investigation into the PSNI conduct in North Belfast and the procedures followed and individuals involved in making the decision to breach the Parades Commission determination." ENDS

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