Belfast Telegraph

Loyalists force grieving Catholic mum holding wake for her son to flee Belfast home, says Sinn Fein

Sinn Fein MLA Caral Ni Chuilin has claimed that loyalist paramilitaries ordered a woman to leave her north Belfast home on Sunday, while her son was due to be waked.

The North Belfast MLA said that the mother was threatened just days after the tragic death of her son. Mrs Ni Chuilin said that the woman's home was then attacked and her windows were smashed.

She said that the family were unable to wake their son in the home.

“Police have confirmed that the loyalist paramilitary group, the UFF, threatened a woman and ordered her to leave her home in Oldpark today," the Sinn Fein MLA said.

“Only hours later her home was attacked and the windows of her home were smashed.

“These shameful and depraved actions were carried in the full knowledge that her son, who died tragically last Thursday, was due to be waked from the family home.

According to the MLA, the woman sought help after she was told by a group of men they had 24 hours to leave.

When the woman returned with police officers to collect clothes from her home, windows had been smashed and "taigs out" - a derogatory reference to Catholics - had been sprayed on the wall.

Ms Ni Chuilin said housing authorities had been contacted to secure the woman's family emergency accommodation.

She called on the PSNI to step up their efforts against loyalist paramilitaries.

“These sickening actions must be condemned by all and the criminals responsible should pack up and get off the backs of the community," Mrs Ni Chuilin said.

“The continued existence of these armed groups is a blight on society.

“The PSNI needs to intensify its efforts remove the scourge of loyalist paramilitaries from our society."

“I would urge anyone with information on today’s incident to bring it forward to the police.”

Mrs Ni Chuilin has also contacted the Housing Executive and called on them to ensure the family gets emergency accommodation.

The PSNI said last night its officers were investigating reports of criminal damage and threats at a house in Summer Street.

A PSNI Inspector said: "Enquiries are at an early stage and we are working to establish a motive.

"We would like anyone who has information about this incident and can assist our investigation to contact us on 101."

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