Belfast Telegraph

Masked youths tear down and burn 'Soldier F' banner in Northern Ireland town

A large 'Support Soldier F' banner that had been erected in Lurgan, north County Armagh, has been removed overnight and burnt by a group of what appears to be masked youths in front of a 'Join the IRA' sign featuring a gunman in a republican area of the town.
A large 'Support Soldier F' banner that had been erected in Lurgan, north County Armagh, has been removed overnight and burnt by a group of what appears to be masked youths in front of a 'Join the IRA' sign featuring a gunman in a republican area of the town.

A large 'Support Soldier F' banner that had been put up in Lurgan has been removed overnight and burnt.

Pictures on social media show a group of masked youths with the banner in front of a 'Join the IRA' sign featuring a gunman in a republican area of Lurgan.

A second photograph then shows three masked youths standing in front of the burning banner while making obscene hand gestures.

Banners and Parachute Regiment flags pledging support for Soldier F have been appearing in loyalist areas all over Northern Ireland following the decision to prosecute one soldier, known only as Soldier F, for allegedly murdering two victims during Bloody Sunday in the Bogside area of Londonderry in 1972.

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Masked youths standing in front of the burning Soldier F banner.

Thirteen people were killed on Bloody Sunday, January 20 1972, and a 14th victim died of his injuries months later.

Soldier F is accused with the murder of two of the victims, William McKinney and James Wray. He has also been charged with the attempted murder of four other civil rights protesters on the same day.

Many people in loyalist communities have expressed support for the soldier, saying that legacy investigations are unfairly focused on killings carried out by so called state forces, rather than terrorist organisations.

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