2 August 2001 Edition

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Clough flag row

A row has flared over the flying of loyalist paramilitary flags in the County Down village of Clough on the fourth anniversary of the loyalist killing of Catholic teenager James Morgan.

Sixteen-year-old James, from Annsborough outside Castlewellan, was mutilated and his body, which was found dumped in an animal pit on the outskirts of Clough on 27 July 1997, was also burned. Over the past 30 years, an active loyalist killer gang has operated out of the Clough area and has been behind numerous attacks on Catholics.

In an attempt to prevent the loyalist display of UDA flags, Sinn Féin is trying to force Down Council to block a grant to a regeneration group in the village until the flags are removed from the Main Street.

Sinn Féin's Willie Clarke urged the council to refuse the request from Clough Community Association and called on the council to take over the maintenance of flower beds until the flags are taken down. Clarke said: ``We believe this regeneration group should be putting pressure on those behind the flags to remove them from this main route through the village.''

An Phoblacht
44 Parnell Sq.
Dublin 1