Belfast Telegraph

IRA graffiti threatening 'prison officers' in Co Tyrone condemned

The graffiti that has appeared outside the former police station in Stewartstown
The graffiti that has appeared outside the former police station in Stewartstown

Graffiti threatening alleged prison officers in Co Tyrone has been condemned as a "disgusting attempt" to intimidate the community.

The graffiti appeared on the walls of the former police station in Stewartstown overnight and reads "screws beware" alongside the names of three men and the image of a target.

There are also several stencilled images of a rifles alongside the letters 'IRA'.

Ulster Unionist councillor Trevor Wilson said the graffiti is "clearly designed to threaten and intimidate people", particularly the three men who are named.

“Given the murders of Prison Officers David Black in November 2012 and Adrian Ismay in March 2016, any potential threat to officers has to be taken seriously," he added.

“It is imperative that the police and the security services continue their good work to disrupt the activities of the organised criminal gangs who are still addicted to threatening and using violence, and that in the meantime, police and prison officers take steps to ensure their personal safety in the face of the ongoing threat.”

Sinn Fein representative Ronan McGinley said the graffiti is "utterly unacceptable" and must be removed.

“The people of Stewartstown have been working hard to prepare the town for the Bloom Awards and unfortunately there are a few people who want to intimidate people and deface the area," he said.

“They in no way represent this community."  

SDLP councillor Malachy Quinn said: “The sectarian graffiti that has appeared in Stewartstown is a disgusting attempt to intimidate people in this community. The faceless thugs who are responsible need to understand, and they need to be made to understand, that they are not wanted here and they aren’t going to drag us back.

“I have been in touch with the council already to request this is removed immediately. And I would ask anyone who saw anything suspicious to come forward to police as soon as possible. We all have a responsibility to challenge the evil of sectarianism in our society.

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