11 January 2007 Edition

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Nic an Bhaird case highlights need for Language Act

Sinn Féin MEP Bairbre de Brún and Francie Brolly MLA joined a protest organised by Na Gaeil óga outside Laganside Court Complex on Friday  January, in support of Máire Nic an Bháird and Rights for Irish speakers in the Six counties.

Nic an Bháird was arrested after she spoke in Irish on a Belfast street. A PSNI member became abusive and pushed the woman before arresting her. She was held in a Belfast PSNI barracks before being charged with disorderly behaviour.

De Brún said: “This case highlights the need for Westminster legislation to protect and promote the rights of Irish speakers. In many ways the plight of Máire Nic an Bhaird has become a reference point for Irish speakers throughout the island and a yardstick by which to measure how much recognition will be given to Irish in the North.”

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