20 January 2000 Edition
RUC beat young nationalists
Three young Downpatrick people viciously beaten by the RUC in the early hours of Sunday morning 9 January may have their case examined by new human rights commissioner, Brice Dickson.
According to Sinn Féin's Aiden Carlin, the party wants the Commission to examine the case and the RUC's involvement in last weekend's incident and its recent involvement in other violent incidents in the nationalist town.
All three young people were charged with various charges including assault, criminal damage and resisting arrest.
Speaking to An Phoblacht Sinn Fein's Aiden Carlin said that the RUC being in the town at that time in such numbers was unusual, ``I think this attack was premeditated, that they were only looking for an excuse to attack young nationalists.''
Blind woman threatened
Sinn Féin representative for the Balmoral area of South Belfast Stephen Long has expressed his alarm at the terrifying ordeal which the RUC put a blind woman and her five-year-old daughter through on Tuesday, 11 January.
Patricia Martin, who lives in South Belfast's Diamond Gardens was arrested on Tuesday 11 January and taken to Dunmurry RUC Barracks over an alleged incident involving a broken window pane.
``Throughout the ordeal the RUC refused to believe that the woman was blind. They forced the woman to sign something, the purpose of which was not explained to her. She was then released without charge. On the journey home, the RUC abused the woman further about her blindness in front of her young daughter''.
Assault file sent to DPP
A file has been sent to the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) in connection with an incident in Derry last August when an RUC officer head butted a man as he tried to leave a city centre pub.
Journalists (in Derry to cover the annual Apprentice Boys march) standing close to riot clad RUC officers caught the moment on camera when the man and a woman attempted to leave Tracey's bar but were prevented by the RUC.
As an argument ensued, one of the officers could clearly be seen head butting the man. The injured man later made a complaint and the RUC confirmed that a file had been sent to the DPP.
Earlier that day the RUC violently cleared Belfast's Ormeau Road of nationalists protesting against an Apprentice Boys march through the area. Women and men were beaten with batons, some of whom needed hospital treatment.