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12 August 1999 Edition

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Confident nationalists mark internment

The thousands who walked from the Bobby Sands Memorial in Twinbrook to the City Hall in Belfast City Centre on Sunday, 8 August to mark the 29th anniversary of the introduction of internment, enjoyed their day in the sun.

As usual, the march was marked with the flags and banners of domestic and foreign delegations., including the Noraid people, the Basques; and the banners of solidarity from the Irish National Congress calling for an end to sectarian marches. The rally was addressed by Derry Sinn Féin councillor and Assembly member for Foyle, Mary Nelis.

The centre of Belfast, once the preserve of unionism and loyalists, has now become a path well worn by those ``Croppies who would not lie down'' and Saoirse ribbons and tricolours in the centre of Belfast are a good thing to see.

City Hall, from where Carson and Craig assembled the masses of loyalism and organised the UVF, has now become the backdrop against which the pronouncements of republicanism are made.

The forlorn `butcher's apron' that flutters limply above the `Famine Queen' has become a symbol not of supremacist domination but of decline.

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