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We should fly Northern Ireland flag proudly to curb nationalist bids to delegitimise the state

Could the Belfast Telegraph please stop propagating the false propaganda that we somehow now do not have a regional flag?

From any brief glance at events where Northern Ireland has a team representing it internationally, it's rather obvious from the support what our flag is. It is also used by several councils and I recall seeing it recently at the Queen's birthday celebrations.

That the old Stormont was closed in the 1970s does not stop its use elsewhere (such as councils), nor negate the increased civic status of the regional flag, nor should the fact that Stormont currently flies the sovereign flag. The flying of the sovereign flag at the recent incarnation of Stormont was a decision made by Peter Mandelson before local politicians even sat - probably a wise decision given it is not an important issue and that we do not have a decisive form of democracy.

It is also not normal practice in the UK for flags to be defined in law and the status of the Northern Ireland flag is little different to that of England - England not having a parliament at all, yet no one suggests England does not have a flag.

I have followed in detail and researched this issue for a number of years and I believe this notion has been spread by nothing other than a campaign by Irish nationalists to try and delegitimise Northern Ireland and its symbols.

I would hope to see increased use of the Northern Ireland flag to counter this propaganda.

For example, I do not understand why Northern Ireland-focused parties use the sovereign flag on their election material.


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