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  • Writer's pictureFriends of Sinn Féin USA

Unionist Mobs Lash Out, Attempt to Attack Catholic Homes

Unionist Youths Attempt to Destroy a Peace Wall in Belfast on Wednesday Night

Last night in Belfast, a unionist mob, many just youths, cheered on by adults, hijacked a bus, attacked journalists, the police and attempted to attack a Catholic neighborhood. While isolated to one area this was just the latest in sporadic attacks from unionists. The attacks followed a well-worn path. Unionist leaders increase tensions, incite crowds, and then try to distance themselves from the predictably violent results. Unionist political leaders have increased tensions in the past number of weeks over Brexit and other issues. Last week they called on the police chief to resign after they disagreed with a policing decision!

All of these are proxy battles for the real issue. Political unionism is now a minority that can no longer rely on the British government. In the face of such violence, now is the time to re-enforce the Good Friday Agreement and the commitment to exclusively peaceful and democratic ways forward, free from threat.

As Sinn Féin President Mary Lou McDonald said: “The violence witnessed on the streets in recent days is totally unacceptable.” Political leaders need to speak with one voice in condemning what is happening and in calling for planned loyalist protests - particularly at interface areas - to be canceled immediately. There is no justification for the attacks we have witnessed on PSNI officers, those who drive our buses, and on local communities. "Now is the time for real leadership."

Intimidation, violence, and threat have no place in politics. The United States needs to speak with one voice to Unionist leaders - The Good Friday Agreement is the only way forward.

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