Belfast Telegraph

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Top model fury over loyalist website

By Stephen Gordon

Published 08/07/2001

A TOP Ulster model has hit out at a group behind a hardline loyalist website, which has hijacked pictures of local beauty queens.

A TOP Ulster model has hit out at a group behind a hardline loyalist website, which has hijacked pictures of local beauty queens.

Former Miss Northern Ireland Fiona Hurley says she is disgusted that images of herself and some of her friends are featured on the loyalist propaganda site.

Fellow ex-Miss NI's Zoe Salmon, Julie Martin and other top local pin-ups also appear on the extensive "Ulster Loyalist" site.

None of the models were consulted by the owners of the site - run by a Stoneyford based group -- and feature in a section headlined: "Northern Ireland Babes - simply the best".

The site peddles a hard-line anti-Agreement message and promotes an independent Ulster in a section titled "the way ahead".

It highlights and condemns IRA atrocities but excuses and glorifies the actions of loyalist paramilitaries.

A juke box on the site features a song praising UFF killer Michael Stone's massacre at Milltown Cemetery.

Other tunes include 'The Night We Burned Ardoyne', described as 'easy listening', and a punk rock track called 'Free Loyalist Prisoners'.

The site also promotes Dissident Loyalist Prisoners Aid.

And it excuses the Shankill Butchers and countless other senseless loyalist murders by claiming all loyalist terrorism is "reactionary, and only after extreme provocation and the murders of innocent Protestants".

The section featuring local pin-up girls is completely out of context with the political propaganda.

Leading local model Fiona Hurley said:

"I'm absolutely disgusted that my image and that of my friends is being used on such a site."

"As a person with no political affiliation, with friends and relatives from both communities in Northern Ireland, I do not wish to be associated with this kind of harmful propaganda in any way.

"I would urge those responsible to remove the offending images from the website as soon as possible."

Added Fiona: "I fail to understand what modelling or models from this country have to do with such material."

Amazingly, the political site, aimed apparently at an American audience, also includes a page of Ulster celebrities from the worlds of sport, TV and film.

Surprisingly, one of the stars featured is Belfast born actor Stephen Rea - who married IRA bomber, Dolours Price.

Belfast Telegraph

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