30 July 1998 Edition

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RUC beat teenager

Mid-Tyrone councillor Terence Brogan has accused the RUC of attacking a 19-year-old Carrickmore hurler. The young man was out with friends celebrating Carrickmore's win over Dungannon in the county championship quarter final, when he was set upon by three RUC men, on the Creggan Road just outside Carrickmore on Friday 17 July. Councillor Brogan said: ``An RUC member who regularly liaises with Special Branch and who poses as a `community friend' in Mid Tyrone, struck the young Carrickmore man at least six times with his baton, causing the victim serious bruising to his arms and upper body.'' Brogan described this as a totally cowardly and unprovoked assault.

In another incident recently the RUC attempted to recruit a 23-year-old Loughmacrory man as an informer. The man, who did not wish to be named, said that an RUC member phoned him and offered him immunity from prosecution on a number of driving related charges in exchange for information on local republicans.

Commenting on the recruitment attempt Councillor Terence Brogan said that ``the debate around new policing arrangements needs to look beyond the RUC, it should to focus on the need to replace the RUC which is entirely discredited and which has actively stepped up their campaign of harassment against young nationalists in several parts of Tyrone in the past month alone.'' He also criticised the ``willingness of local media to present the RUC in an unquestioningly positive light while our young people have their rights abused week in, week out, away from the spotlight of the cameras.''

An Phoblacht
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