26 January 2006 Edition

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Bloody Sunday event targeted by unionists and neo-Nazis

The sectarianism and racism aimed at Catholics and Irish nationalists in Scotland once again raised its ugly head at the weekend when unionist thugs backed by British neo-Nazis attacked a Bloody Sunday commemoration march through Glasgow on Sunday 22 January.

The attack came just days after Glasgow-based Tory MSP Bill Aitken warned against All-Ireland champions Tyrone bringing the Sam Maguire to Scotland.

In an outburst that demonstrated the extent to which anti-Irishness permeates the Scottish political establishment Aitken called for the cup to be banned from Glasgow Celtic's Parkhead stadium and branded Sam Maguire a "terrorist".

Members of the Tyrone All-Ireland winning team are expected to parade the trophy at Parkhead on Saturday 28 before Celtic's game against Dundee United.

Angry Tyrone GAA Chairman Pat Darcy said: "This is a sporting occasion. I think Aitken is trying to get something started here."

The trouble that flared at the Bloody Sunday rally in the Scottish city on Saturday 21 January was sparked by Scottish loyalists backed by members of the British National Party.

More than 1,000 people turned out to support the parade organised by Cáirde na hÉireann.

As the march reached the city's George Square bricks, bottles and coins were hurled by the 400 strong crowd of unionists, some waving union flags and giving Nazi salutes

Derry man Gerry Duddy, whose brother Jackie was among those killed by British Paratroopers on Bloody Sunday, spoke at the commemoration said it was a frightening experience for those taking part. "At one point, there were bottles, glasses and various other things being thrown by loyalists at the marchers. We were subjected to a volley of racist and sectarian chants as the march began."

Speaking to An Phoblacht Cairde na hÉireann spokesperson Jim Slaven said those taking part in the parade had behaved in a dignified manner in the face of extreme provocation and sectarian insults.

Eleven loyalists were arrested for offences including breach of the peace, assault and possession of a knife.

An Phoblacht
44 Parnell Sq.
Dublin 1

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