Belfast Telegraph

Windows smashed in east Belfast 'racist' attacks

By Claire Cromie

Windows have been smashed at three homes in suspected racist attacks in east Belfast.

Bricks were hurled at three houses in the Sydenham area - two in Strandburn Park and one in Victoria Avenue - within a 15 minute period on Sunday night.

East Belfast Alliance MP Naomi Long has condemned the attacks, which police are treating as linked hate crimes. 

No-one was injured, but Mrs Long said such intimidation had no place in our society.

“Sydenham, like many areas in East Belfast, has a growing ethnic minority community. They are part of the local community and I utterly condemn attacks on them or any attempt to intimidate them, as would the vast majority of people who live in the area.

“Violence and prejudice have no place in a peaceful and stable society. Respect must be shown to everyone regardless of background.

“I would urge anyone with information on those that carried out these attacks to contact police immediately.”

The attacks happened at 11.25pm in Strandburn Park, just after 11.30pm in Victoria Avenue and again in Strandburn Park just before 11.40pm. Front windows were smashed in all three incidents.

Chief Inspector Mark McEwan, Area Commander, East Belfast said: "Enquiries into these incidents are continuing and are at an early stage. Police believe the three incidents are linked and treating the incidents as hate crimes.

"I would ask anyone who may have witnessed this hate crime incident or anyone who may have information relating to these attacks to share that information with police at Strandtown on 0845 600 8000 so that the perpetrators of this crime can be brought before the courts

"Or if someone would prefer to provide information without giving their details, they can contact the independent charity Crimestoppers and speak to the anonymously on 0800 555 111."

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