Outrage after Kilkeel poppy wreaths thrown in river
Wreaths placed on a memorial in a Co Down town have been thrown into the local river.
At around 10.30am yesterday police received a report that the memorial at Bridge Street in Kilkeel had been targeted.
Newry, Mourne and Down independent councillor Henry Reilly hit out at those responsible.
"I am disgusted that anyone would be motivated to disrespect the memorial in such a fashion," he said.
"The memorial was not created as a political project but solely as a means of respecting the memory of all those who died in our council area due to their service.
"Those named on the memorial represent both Protestant and Catholic and people of all faiths and backgrounds.
"The people who would even contemplate desecrating wreaths laid in their memory should consider the degree of sacrifice made by those police and military, but also the continued pain and suffering of their loved ones.
"I am very grateful to the young people who rallied round this morning and actually went into the adjacent Kilkeel river to retrieve several of the wreaths.
"This is the first time there has been such an attack since the memorial was created 11 years ago and I sincerely hope it will be the last.
"Respecting the deceased is not too much to ask."
PSNI Inspector John Allen said: "I am appealing to anyone who knows anything about this incident, or who has been in the area in recent days and noticed any suspicious activity, to contact police in Ardmore on the non emergency number 101, quoting reference number 524 of 17/06/18.
"Alternatively, information can also be provided to the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111, which is 100% anonymous and gives people the power to speak up and stop crime."