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DUP's Arlene Foster wants masked dissident republicans at Easter Rising marches behind bars

By Jonny Bell

Published 28/03/2016

The National Republican Commemoration Committee held an Easter Rising dedication parade in Coalisland on Easter Sunday amid heavy Police presence.
The National Republican Commemoration Committee held an Easter Rising dedication parade in Coalisland on Easter Sunday amid heavy Police presence.
The National Republican Commemoration Committee held an Easter Rising dedication parade in Coalisland on Easter Sunday amid heavy Police presence.
The National Republican Commemoration Committee held an Easter Rising dedication parade in Coalisland on Easter Sunday amid heavy Police presence.
A masked youth throws stones at police in Lurgan. Presseye
A masked youth throws stones at police in Lurgan. Presseye
A masked youth throws stones at police in Lurgan. Presseye

First Minister Arlene Foster has said she is deeply concerned over displays of masked men parading at Easter Rising demonstrations and dissident republican violence and said those responsible need put behind bars.

The DUP leader hit out after masked men took part in Easter Rising demonstrations in Lurgan and Coalisland over the weekend.

A van was also hijacked and set on fire and police attacked with petrol bombs in the republican Kilwilkie area of the Co Armagh town which hit Easter Monday's train services.

On Monday afternoon, balaclava-clad youths threw stones at police and set a wheelie bin alight in the area.

Mrs Foster said: "I've spoken with [the PSNI's] ACC Martin about the deeply concerning and illegal displays by masked men on Sunday and continued dissident violence last night.

"I want to see these people behind bars. No place for masked men in Northern Ireland.

"Police assure me that evidence has been gathered. It's clear that the Parades Commission determination has been breached."

Assistant Chief Constable Stephen Martin, responding said: “In policing all events over the Easter weekend our over-riding desire is to ensure that commemorative occasions, parades and protests pass off lawfully and peacefully.

"Our focus, is on keeping communities safe and our job, with a few notable exceptions, has been made that much easier because of the responsible attitude of all parties concerned.

“We are however, investigating suspected breaches of Parades Commission determinations in Coalisland and un-notified processions in Ardoyne and Lurgan. We have gathered evidence at these events and will present reports to the Public Prosecution Service with a view to holding individuals accountable.”

Pacemaker Press 26/3/2016
Masked Men during a Republican Sinn Fein Parade in Lurgan on Saturday, To mark the centenary of the Easter Rising.
Picture Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 26/3/2016 Masked Men during a Republican Sinn Fein Parade in Lurgan on Saturday, To mark the centenary of the Easter Rising. Picture Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 26/3/2016 Masked Men during a Republican Sinn Fein Parade in Lurgan on Saturday, To mark the centenary of the Easter Rising. Picture Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 26/3/2016 Masked Men during a Republican Sinn Fein Parade in Lurgan on Saturday, To mark the centenary of the Easter Rising. Picture Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 26/3/2016 Masked Men during a Republican Sinn Fein Parade in Lurgan on Saturday, To mark the centenary of the Easter Rising. Picture Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 26/3/2016 Masked Men during a Republican Sinn Fein Parade in Lurgan on Saturday, To mark the centenary of the Easter Rising. Picture Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 26/3/2016 Masked Men during a Republican Sinn Fein Parade in Lurgan on Saturday, To mark the centenary of the Easter Rising. Picture Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 26/3/2016 Masked Men during a Republican Sinn Fein Parade in Lurgan on Saturday, To mark the centenary of the Easter Rising. Picture Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 26/3/2016 Masked Men during a Republican Sinn Fein Parade in Lurgan on Saturday, To mark the centenary of the Easter Rising. Picture Pacemaker
Picture - Kevin Scott / Presseye Belfast , UK - March 26, Pictured is the Republican Sinn Fein commemorative march as it makes its way from the Kilwilkee Estate to St Colemans Cemetary on March 26, 2016 Belfast, Northern Ireland ( Photo by Kevin Scott / Presseye )
Picture - Kevin Scott / Presseye Belfast , UK - March 26, Pictured is the Republican Sinn Fein commemorative march as it makes its way from the Kilwilkee Estate to St Colemans Cemetary on March 26, 2016 Belfast, Northern Ireland ( Photo by Kevin Scott / Presseye )
Picture - Kevin Scott / Presseye Belfast , UK - March 26, Pictured is the Republican Sinn Fein commemorative march as it makes its way from the Kilwilkee Estate to St Colemans Cemetary on March 26, 2016 Belfast, Northern Ireland ( Photo by Kevin Scott / Presseye )
McBurney/Members of Republican Sinn Fein commemorate the centenary of the Easter Rising. Pictured a members of the RSF colour party addresses crowd gathered at St Colman's Cemetery Date: Saturday 26 March 2016 Location: Kilwilkee Estate, Lurgan Credit: Liam McBurney/RAZORPIX Copyright: Liam McBurney/RAZORPIX Liam McBurney +44 7837 685767 +44 2890 660676 liammcburney@gmail.com
McBurney/Members of Republican Sinn Fein commemorate the centenary of the Easter Rising. Pictured members of the RSF colour party march through the streets of the Kilwilkee Estate Date: Saturday 26 March 2016 Location: Kilwilkee Estate, Lurgan Credit: Liam McBurney/RAZORPIX Copyright: Liam McBurney/RAZORPIX Liam McBurney +44 7837 685767 +44 2890 660676 liammcburney@gmail.com
McBurney/Members of Republican Sinn Fein commemorate the centenary of the Easter Rising. Pictured members of the RSF colour party march at St Colman's Cemetery Date: Saturday 26 March 2016 Location: Kilwilkee Estate, Lurgan Credit: Liam McBurney/RAZORPIX Copyright: Liam McBurney/RAZORPIX Liam McBurney +44 7837 685767 +44 2890 660676 liammcburney@gmail.com
Members of Republican Sinn Fein commemorate the centenary of the Easter Rising. Pictured members of the RSF colour party march through the streets of the Kilwilkee Estate
McBurney/Members of Republican Sinn Fein commemorate the centenary of the Easter Rising. Pictured members of the RSF colour party march through the streets of the Kilwilkee Estate Date: Saturday 26 March 2016 Location: Kilwilkee Estate, Lurgan Credit: Liam McBurney/RAZORPIX Copyright: Liam McBurney/RAZORPIX Liam McBurney +44 7837 685767 +44 2890 660676 liammcburney@gmail.com
McBurney/Members of Republican Sinn Fein commemorate the centenary of the Easter Rising. Pictured a man lays a wreath at the Republican Plot of St Colman's Cemetery Date: Saturday 26 March 2016 Location: Kilwilkee Estate, Lurgan Credit: Liam McBurney/RAZORPIX Copyright: Liam McBurney/RAZORPIX Liam McBurney +44 7837 685767 +44 2890 660676 liammcburney@gmail.com
McBurney/Members of Republican Sinn Fein commemorate the centenary of the Easter Rising. Pictured a members of the RSF colour party addresses crowd gathered at St Colman's Cemetery Date: Saturday 26 March 2016 Location: Kilwilkee Estate, Lurgan Credit: Liam McBurney/RAZORPIX Copyright: Liam McBurney/RAZORPIX Liam McBurney +44 7837 685767 +44 2890 660676 liammcburney@gmail.com
Picture - Kevin Scott / Presseye Belfast , UK - March 26, Pictured is the Republican Sinn Fein commemorative march as it makes its way from the Kilwilkee Estate to St Colemans Cemetary on March 26, 2016 Belfast, Northern Ireland ( Photo by Kevin Scott / Presseye )
Picture - Kevin Scott / Presseye Belfast , UK - March 26, Pictured is the Republican Sinn Fein commemorative march as it makes its way from the Kilwilkee Estate to St Colemans Cemetary on March 26, 2016 Belfast, Northern Ireland ( Photo by Kevin Scott / Presseye )
Picture - Kevin Scott / Presseye Belfast , UK - March 26, Pictured is the Republican Sinn Fein commemorative march as it makes its way from the Kilwilkee Estate to St Colemans Cemetary on March 26, 2016 Belfast, Northern Ireland ( Photo by Kevin Scott / Presseye )
Picture - Kevin Scott / Presseye Belfast , UK - March 26, Pictured is the Republican Sinn Fein commemorative march as it makes its way from the Kilwilkee Estate to St Colemans Cemetary on March 26, 2016 Belfast, Northern Ireland ( Photo by Kevin Scott / Presseye )
Picture - Kevin Scott / Presseye Belfast , UK - March 26, Pictured is the Republican Sinn Fein commemorative march as it makes its way from the Kilwilkee Estate to St Colemans Cemetary on March 26, 2016 Belfast, Northern Ireland ( Photo by Kevin Scott / Presseye )

ACC Martin added: ”There have been numerous events across Northern Ireland so far this weekend and I am pleased that they have passed off largely successfully and without any serious incident.

"Large numbers of people have attended events, in many locations, the vast majority of whom have done so in a spirit of historical commemoration. I look forward to this continuing throughout the rest of Easter Monday.”

Earlier Lurgan councillor Carla Condell Lockhart urged those taking part and attending the town's Apprentice Boys parade to "act calm, walk proud and not fall for republican agenda to criminalise youth".

 

The Apprentice Boys of Derry are to march through the town on Easter Monday.

Carla Lockhart DUP
Carla Lockhart DUP
Carla Condell Lockhart has appealed for calm.
Police attend a security alert in west Belfast. Pic Kevin Scott Presseye

DUP councillor Carla Condell Lockhart writing on her Facebook page, she said: "Please be assured that the PSNI are working to ensure the parade takes off on time and remains calm!

"Our thoughts are with the individual whose van was hijacked and set alight.

"Today as we prepare to parade/watch the Apprentice Boys parade in Lurgan can I encourage everyone to remain calm ... There is a republican agenda to have us pulled into controversy and ultimately see our young people arrested and end up with criminal records."

Read more: Riot fears as loyalists given go-ahead for huge Easter Monday march in Lurgan

The former Craigavon Mayor continued: "There is also the worry that someone will get badly injured ... PLEASE PLEASE refrain and think twice before doing anything rash. Remember to ALWAYS ACT WITHIN THE LAW!!!

"Walk tall and proud ... We as a community have no need to stoop to the levels of others. Our aim is for a peaceful, dignified parade aimed at honouring our forefathers."

Meanwhile, in the Falls Court area of west Belfast, police attended a report of a suspicious object, it was later declared a hoax.

And in Co Tyrone the Loughmallon Road was closed due to an elaborate hoax. Police are appealing for witnesses.

The William King Memorial Flute Band pictured at the annual Relief of Derry celebration. The event during which the Apprentice Boys of Derry parent clubs parade around the historic Walls of Londonderry marks the end of the Siege of the city which was the longest siege in British Military History. It is the largest parade by the Loyal Orders with up to 40,000 people and 140 bands taking part. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 08.08.15
The William King Memorial Flute Band pictured at the annual Relief of Derry celebration. The event during which the Apprentice Boys of Derry parent clubs parade around the historic Walls of Londonderry marks the end of the Siege of the city which was the longest siege in British Military History. It is the largest parade by the Loyal Orders with up to 40,000 people and 140 bands taking part. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 08.08.15
The Blackskull band from Glasgow pictured at the annual Relief of Derry celebration. The event during which the Apprentice Boys of Derry parent clubs parade around the historic Walls of Londonderry marks the end of the Siege of the city which was the longest siege in British Military History. It is the largest parade by the Loyal Orders with up to 40,000 people and 140 bands taking part. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 08.08.15
The General Committee of the Aprentice Boys leds the way the annual Relief of Derry celebration. The event during which the Apprentice Boys of Derry parent clubs parade around the historic Walls of Londonderry marks the end of the Siege of the city which was the longest siege in British Military History. It is the largest parade by the Loyal Orders with up to 40,000 people and 140 bands taking part. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 08.08.15
Nicole graham and Jack McClements who watched history unfold during the pageant which takes place before the main Relief of Derry celebration. The annual event brings to an end the week long Maiden City Festival which marks the end of the Siege of Derry which began in 1688 and ended in 1689. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 08.08.15
Apprentice Boys Governor Jom Brownlee pictured as the main Relief of Derry parade gets underway on the Craigavon Bridge on saturday. The annual event brings to an end the week long Maiden City Festival which marks the end of the Siege of Derry which began in 1688 and ended in 1689. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 08.08.15
The public get a taste of siege rations during the pageant which takes place before the main Relief of Derry celebration. The annual event brings to an end the week long Maiden City Festival which marks the end of the Siege of Derry which began in 1688 and ended in 1689. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 08.08.15
Samuel McKittrick and Brad Campbell, pictured at the annual Relief of Derry celebration. The event during which the Apprentice Boys of Derry parent clubs parade around the historic Walls of Londonderry marks the end of the Siege of the city which was the longest siege in British Military History. It is the largest parade by the Loyal Orders with up to 40,000 people and 140 bands taking part. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 08.08.15
The Apprentice Boys defend the city during the pageant which takes place before the main Relief of Derry celebration. The annual event brings to an end the week long Maiden City Festival which marks the end of the Siege of Derry which began in 1688 and ended in 1689. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 08.08.15
Andrea and Tyler Kells try and keep warm during the pageant which takes place before the main Relief of Derry celebration. The annual event brings to an end the week long Maiden City Festival which marks the end of the Siege of Derry which began in 1688 and ended in 1689. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 08.08.15
Victor Kitson, right, pictured with his sons Glen and Lee, at the annual Relief of Derry celebration. The event during which the Apprentice Boys of Derry parent clubs parade around the historic Walls of Londonderry marks the end of the Siege of the city which was the longest siege in British Military History. It is the largest parade by the Loyal Orders with up to 40,000 people and 140 bands taking part. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 08.08.15
Cpuncillor Maurice Devenney pictured at the annual Relief of Derry celebration. The event during which the Apprentice Boys of Derry parent clubs parade around the historic Walls of Londonderry marks the end of the Siege of the city which was the longest siege in British Military History. It is the largest parade by the Loyal Orders with up to 40,000 people and 140 bands taking part. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 08.08.15
William Lorimer and Archie Richardson, pictured at the annual Relief of Derry celebration. The event during which the Apprentice Boys of Derry parent clubs parade around the historic Walls of Londonderry marks the end of the Siege of the city which was the longest siege in British Military History. It is the largest parade by the Loyal Orders with up to 40,000 people and 140 bands taking part. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 08.08.15
The General Committee of the Aprentice Boys leds the way the annual Relief of Derry celebration. The event during which the Apprentice Boys of Derry parent clubs parade around the historic Walls of Londonderry marks the end of the Siege of the city which was the longest siege in British Military History. It is the largest parade by the Loyal Orders with up to 40,000 people and 140 bands taking part. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 08.08.15
Robert Gillespie and Mark Byers pictured at the annual Relief of Derry celebration. The event during which the Apprentice Boys of Derry parent clubs parade around the historic Walls of Londonderry marks the end of the Siege of the city which was the longest siege in British Military History. It is the largest parade by the Loyal Orders with up to 40,000 people and 140 bands taking part. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 08.08.15
The General Committee of the Aprentice Boys leds the way the annual Relief of Derry celebration. The event during which the Apprentice Boys of Derry parent clubs parade around the historic Walls of Londonderry marks the end of the Siege of the city which was the longest siege in British Military History. It is the largest parade by the Loyal Orders with up to 40,000 people and 140 bands taking part. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 08.08.15
The General Committee of the Apprentice Boys leads the way during the annual Relief of Derry celebration. The event during which the Apprentice Boys of Derry parent clubs parade around the historic Walls of Londonderry marks the end of the Siege of the city which was the longest siege in British Military History. It is the largest parade by the Loyal Orders with up to 40,000 people and 140 bands taking part. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 08.08.15
Lieutenant Governor Graeme Stenhouse and Paul Stewart pictured at the annual Relief of Derry celebration. The event during which the Apprentice Boys of Derry parent clubs parade around the historic Walls of Londonderry marks the end of the Siege of the city which was the longest siege in British Military History. It is the largest parade by the Loyal Orders with up to 40,000 people and 140 bands taking part. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 08.08.15
Maurice Devenney and brearern from the MItchelburne Club presents a commemorative glass placque to Andy McAdam from the Blackskull Band of Fife and Drums to mark the bands 25th appearance at the annual Relief of Derry celebration. The event during which the Apprentice Boys of Derry parent clubs parade around the historic Walls of Londonderry marks the end of the Siege of the city which was the longest siege in British Military History. It is the largest parade by the Loyal Orders with up to 40,000 people and 140 bands taking part. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 08.08.15

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