Belfast Telegraph

SDLP leader Eastwood praises Hanna's 'restraint' following Ian Paisley insult

SDLP’s Colum Eastwood
SDLP’s Colum Eastwood

SDLP leader Colum Eastwood has backed party colleague Claire Hanna after she received criticism for comments made towards DUP MP Ian Paisley on Twitter.

South Belfast MLA Ms Hanna described the MP as a "g******e" after seeing his response to a BBC reporter who asked the controversial MP whether he would be offering sympathy to the Prime Minister "after a difficult day".

Mr Paisley replied "I'll be asking her for milk and no sugar" before giving the reporter a serious reply to a question about the Brexit process and the DUP's attitude to Mrs May's withdrawal agreement.

Ms Hanna reacted to the online video tweeting: "Take back control and hand it to this g******e."

"It genuinely kills me that he is an elected representative, it degrades everything," she later tweeted.

The SDLP MLA recieved plenty of support online, but was also criticised in a number of quarters for her choice of language.

Mr Eastwood said that he believed Ms Hanna's comments were "very restrained".

"Just catching up with 'g******egate'," the SDLP leader tweeted.

"I think Claire Hanna was very restrained but accurate in her use of language."

Ian Paisley
Ian Paisley

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