Sinn Fein slammed over image of gunman on social media
Unionist politicians reacted angrily last night after a sinister image of a gunman was posted on the official North Down Sinn Fein Facebook page.
The composite image - which was quickly removed by the party - was condemned by a former mayor of the area, Alan Chambers.
"I'm amazed that such an image would appear on a political party's website," he said.
"But given recent gaffes by the Sinn Fein leadership - like Mary Lou McDonald's intervention in the selection process for a new PSNI Chief Constable, or her walking behind an 'England get out of Ireland' banner in New York, and the disgraceful Kingsmill loaf incident last year - nothing should shock me about the stupidity of Sinn Fein.
"I would hope that the Sinn Fein leadership will condemn this, and disassociate themselves from this intimidating image."
DUP councillor Peter Martin said he was appalled at the image and what it represented.
"I'm very shocked that it has appeared in north Down," he said.
"Sinn Fein want people to be taken in by their rebranding of their image and their messaging, but I don't believe anyone is really being fooled.
"The image harks back to imagery of the past, with the Armalite in one hand and the ballot box in the other.
"My relatives are from Fermanagh, and there are graveyards full of UDR and RUC personnel put there by the IRA.
"We thought that was all behind us.
"I am simply appalled at the image and what it represents.
"An image like this shows the real face of Sinn Fein," the councillor said.
Contacted by the Belfast Telegraph about the image, a Sinn Fein spokesperson said last night: "This image was posted in error.
"It was removed as soon as party members saw the post.
"Sinn Fein has taken steps to tighten up the administration of this page."