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11 April 2002 Edition

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Ballymena RUC/PSNI picketed

Ballymoney councillor Philip McGuigan and other North Antrim republicans picketed Ballymena RUC/PSNI barracks last Sunday, 7 April, to highlight ongoing sectarian violence against nationalists in the North Antrim town.

According to McGuigan, young nationalists are being subjected to loyalist violence and harassment from the RUC/PSNI.

"Just last week a young Catholic was assaulted in a bar by a mob of loyalists," he told An Phoblacht. "When he phoned for assistance, some of his friends came from another bar to help and a fight ensued. When the RUC/PSNI arrived they turned on the nationalists and arrested seven. They were later charged with riotous behaviour. None of the loyalists involved was even approached by the RUC/PSNI."

McGuigan later revealed that a car containing a number of Sinn Féin members was followed and stopped by the RUC/PSNI as they left Ballymena after the picket. Those stopped were harassed while being held. "When the Sinn Féin members asked on what grounds they were being held an RUC/PSNI member told them 'we can do this at any time'," said McGuigan.


An Phoblacht
44 Parnell Sq.
Dublin 1

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