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I have not been kicked out, says 'suspended' Ukip councillor Henry Reilly

Confusion surrounds the status of a prominent Ukip representative in Northern Ireland after he denied the party had suspended him.

Henry Reilly resigned as regional chairman of Ukip Northern Ireland last month after an apparent dispute with the party's leader in the region, Assembly member David McNarry.

But, following the visit of party leader Nigel Farage to Belfast on Monday, the party has issued a statement saying Mr Reilly has been suspended.

A spokesman said: "Ukip has suspended councillor Henry Reilly from party activity. The matter is now in the hands of the general secretary who will report to the NEC (National Executive Committee) in due course."

Mr Reilly, a Newry, Mourne and Down councillor, said action had been taken against him for a "minor technical issue" related to comments he made to the press on the day of Mr Farage's visit about his resignation as chairman.

But he insisted he had only been suspended from certain party activities.

"It just means I am suspended from some internal party activities but I am still a full Ukip councillor," he said.

In an interview with BBC Radio Ulster's Talkback programme, he added: "I'm not kicked out of the party. I'm still a fully functioning Ukip councillor. It is just an internal party issue that just needs to be resolved now."

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