Belfast Telegraph

Dissident republican threats as police officers pose with Santa

By Chris Kilpatrick

Dissident republicans have launched a barrage of abuse against police after officers were pictured with a Santa Claus.

The picture was taken at Foyleside Shopping Centre in Londonderry and posted on Facebook.

Hardline republicans called for a boycott of the Christmas grotto following the publication of the picture.

A series of sinister messages about police were also posted online.

Some accused the Santa of being a "tout" and a "traitor".

One woman said "the only good cop is a dead one".

Another said: "It's a pity Santa wasn't a jihad bomber complete with vest, that would wipe the smirks off these rats' gubs."

A number of comments appeared on the Facebook page of Derry councillor Gary Donnelly.

Last month he was jailed after he and two other men were convicted of daubing political slogans on Derry's historic walls.

The 43-year-old 32 County Sovereignty Movement head shared the picture with thousands of friends on his Facebook page last week.

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