Around 250 republicans gathered with tricolours and placards amid a heavy police presence outside Maghaberry Prison yesterday to protest against conditions inside the facility.
High profile ex-prisoners — including Old Bailey bomber Marian Price — stood alongside relatives of men currently in the jail’s republican wing. They said they were there to highlight “unacceptable conditions”, including alleged 21-hour lockdowns and unnecessary strip searches.
A number of ex-prisoners and activists spoke to the crowd standing behind a placard calling for the restoration of political status.
The atmosphere inside the prison is understood to be tense, following last week’s Easter Sunday sit-in when a number of republicans barricaded themselves in a room for more than 24 hours. The Prison Service has strongly refuted the prisoners’ claims.