7 July 2005 Edition

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Harryville intimidation resurfaces

Loyalists have threatened to re-start their picket of the Church of Our Lady Catholic chapel at Harryville near Ballymena if Orange parades are re-routed in the County Antrim town.

Progressive Unionist Party (PUP) member Billy McCaughey, a former RUC member who was jailed for life for killing Catholic chemist William Strathern in 1977, said he had a suspicion that if the Parades Commission banned any Orange parades in Ballymena the Harryville picket could resume.

The church has once again been forced to cancel Saturday evening Masses during the months of July and August.

During church services between September 1996 and May 1998 worshippers had to run the gauntlet of sectarian attacks and abuse after loyalists tried to prevent people from attending mass because of nationalist objections to an Orange march through the nearby nationalist village of Dunloy.

An Phoblacht
44 Parnell Sq.
Dublin 1