Belfast Telegraph

City parade passes off peacefully

By Sarah Henderson

The first disputed loyalist parade of the marching season has passed off without incident in Belfast.

The Whiterock parade had been banned from crossing the Workman's Avenue peace line gates for the second year in a row. The Parades Commission decision was lambasted by unionist representatives as "ridiculous" and "nonsensical".

Scores of protestors had been expected to oppose the march, and dozens of heavily armed police and armoured PSNI vehicles lined the route on Saturday.

But nationalist residents around the Workman's Avenue potential flashpoint cancelled their planned picket against the march at the 11th hour. Instead, the parade was watched only by a small group of people living in the area.

The PSNI thanked marchers and residents for their "exemplary behaviour".

Assistant Chief Constable Alan Todd said: "I'm pleased that the parade passed off peacefully."

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