Belfast Telegraph

PM sends get well wishes to Dodds

David Cameron has sent get well wishes to a Belfast MP injured in the riots, as he called for all sides to act more responsibly.

Deputy leader of the DUP Nigel Dodds was knocked unconscious as he tried to calm the sectarian violence erupting on the streets of his constituency last Friday.

The Prime Minister said in the Commons: "I think everyone across the House would have been very concerned to hear the news about the protests taking place in his constituency.

"I know everyone wishes him well and I gather he is now improving. We look forward to welcoming him back to this House."

He added: "On the issue, I think it's very important that we see responsibility on all sides in Northern Ireland, and we do take steps...in terms of making sure that these marches can go ahead in a way that respects the fact that communities must be good neighbours to each other and I know that the Northern Ireland Secretary will help in any way that she can."

DUP MP Gregory Campbell had asked during Prime Minister's Questions: "Will the Prime Minister join with me in wishing a speedy recovery to the member for North Belfast, Nigel Dodds, who was injured whilst seeking to resolve problems in his constituency during the recent unacceptable disturbances.

"Will he also join with many in Northern Ireland who want to see the initiative, headed up by Dr Richard Haass, from the United States of America, in considerable effort and good will that will be required to resolve all of the outstanding parading issues, which have been plagued by violent opposition for far too long?"

In Tuesday's Northern Ireland Questions in the Commons, Northern Ireland Secretary Theresa Villiers said there was nothing patriotic about Union flag-carrying rioters who attacked police enforcing a ban on the Orange Order march last Friday.

Ms Villiers said those responsible would be brought to justice.

She added: "There has been talk of attacks on British identity and culture in Northern Ireland. Well, the sort of behaviour that has been taking place in North Belfast does nothing to promote Britishness or the pro-Union cause, rather it undermines it in the eyes of the overwhelming majority of the people of Northern Ireland and in the rest of the UK."

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