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Alliance out of touch with flag restriction policy

Published 22/07/2011

Cllr Marie Hendron is either simply deluding herself or she is totally ignoring reality if she believes the Alliance Party's policy of restricted flying of the national flag on the premier local government building in Belfast is in any way consistent with the approach in any other regional capital of the UK.

Even the shortest visits to London, Edinburgh and Cardiff would prove her assertion to be completely and utterly wrong.

All key government buildings in London, Edinburgh and Cardiff daily fly the Union flag. In fact in London, the Welsh and Scottish Offices go further, they also fly their respective regional flags, something the Northern Ireland Office fails to do.

Yet the key falsehood in Ms Hendron's, and I suggest Alliance's approach, is that by removing or restricting the appropriate and respectful flying of national symbols, is in some way "working for everyone" or seeking a "shared future".

Like many of Alliance's ill-thought out policies, restriction of the flying of the national flag on the premier local government building in Belfast sets Northern Ireland outside the norm.

So I challenge Ms Hendron, in those inimitable words - "Put up or shut up" - tell us one other country where the flying of the national flag is restricted?



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