| 3.4°C Belfast

TUV's Allister brands video of group burning flags a hate crime

Close

The Union Flag being set on fire.

The Union Flag being set on fire.

The Union Flag being set on fire.

TUV leader Jim Allister has condemned a video from a group calling itself 'Anti Imperialist Action Ireland' which shows republicans burning the Union flag, a Poppy wreath and British Army flags in Northern Ireland.

The video, posted on social media by the group - which says it is opposed to the "British occupation of Ireland" - shows young men burning the Union Flag, the Ulster Banner and a Parachute Regiment flag.

A Remembrance Day poppy wreath can also be seen being set alight.

In a statement sent to the Belfast Telegraph, the group said: "Members of Anti Imperialist Action Ireland and Macradh ISR Youth have removed British Army and Union Flags in the Occupied Six Counties and burned them.

"The flag of the forces of occupation, along with other pro-imperialist flags can be seen on fire in the video released by the groups.

"The Socialist Republican Mass Organisations involved in the direct action have stated that so long as Ireland remains illegally occupied, resistance is inevitable and it's time for the Brits to get out of Ireland and take their terrorists with them.

"The youth of a new generation are ready and willing to rebuild the struggle for National Liberation and Socialist Revolution."

Close

Northern Ireland flag being burnt.

Northern Ireland flag being burnt.

Northern Ireland flag being burnt.

The video states that the group has a "cell of anti-imperialists" working in Northern Ireland. TUV MLA Jim Allister said that the video is a hate crime and should be investigated.

He said that when Irish flags are burnt on bonfires, republican parties, such as Sinn Fein, call for police investigations.

"It is a hate crime and criminal damage, among other things," he said.

"This is a test of Sinn Fein duplicity because they are the people that insist that touches upon the Irish flag is a hate crime.

"Here you have it in on video.

"Of course it should be investigated. Will it be? That is a different question."

Sinn Fein has been approached for comment.

The video appeared on social media as British Prime Minister Boris Johnson visited Northern Ireland on Thursday.

During the visit Mr Johnson outlined plans to establish a centenary forum and a centenary historical advisory panel to mark 100 years since the foundation of Northern Ireland and today's UK.

Belfast Telegraph