Belfast Telegraph

Anger at republican flag inside former police station in Northern Ireland

By Donna Deeney

The erection of a republican flag inside a disused police station has been slammed.

A Starry Plough associated with the Irish Republican Socialist Party - the political wing of the INLA - is flying from a communications mast inside the grounds of the former base in Maghera.

The building hasn't been used by the PSNI since 2013, and is the property of the Policing Board.

DUP MLA Keith Buchanan said: "The obvious message to take from this is that the people who put it there think that the police are gone and they are in charge now. This was no schoolboy prank, this was a deliberate act planned and carried out by more than one person who went to considerable lengths to scale the perimeter and then climb the communications mast."

PSNI superintendent Mike Baird said: "We are aware a flag has been erected at the disused PSNI building in Maghera. The facility has not been an operational police station since 2013 and has been put forward for disposal. The site is not currently used by any PSNI personnel."

Meanwhile, a DUP councillor has accused authorities of turning a blind eye to sectarian graffiti on road signs. Clement Cuthbertson said images of guns and terrorist symbols have appeared on signs in Dungannon.

The Department for Infrastructure said priority is given to situations considered a hazard.

It added: "As the current graffiti does not impact directly on road safety, the department will continue to monitor the situation and will take action when appropriate following consultation with the PSNI and elected/local community representatives."

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