9 August 2001 Edition
Barrack Street residents demand security
Residents of Lettuce Hill in West Belfast held a protest on Monday 6 August against ongoing loyalist attacks on their homes. They blocked off Barrack Street and Divis Street, two major arterial routes into Belfast City centre.
Lettuce Hill Concerned Residents' spokesperson Christie Robinson told An Phoblacht: ``We have had enough. All we want is to live free from loyalist intimidation in our own homes and area. 98% of traffic using this area is not from around here sÂESSIE~2 ÷y~*÷y~*ÑÂ News2 ÂDessi2e DublinÂESSIE~3 ' f*ãÇ~*uÂjpg ª ÂDessiDªe Ellis.ÂESSIE~1JPG oeuÑ*oeuÑ*≠ ÂPageí ÂDessiTíe Front ÂESSIE~4 ¤uÇ*¤uÇ* a Ò Dessi Òe 3 ExtrESSIE~1 páÇ*páÇ*Xú ESOURCEFRK:Ýã*:Ýã*_.:NV ÿHÁU™
A teenage boy was beaten and threatened with a knife by two men in a sectarian attack in Lyndhurst Road in the Kilfennan area Derry on Sunday 5 August.
During the attack, the 14-year-old boy was kicked about the head and body and threatened with a knife before two women in a passing car stopped and intervened. The attackers rode off on their motorbike but the boy sustained a cut on his lip and bruises all over his body.
McGuinness warns on pipe bombs
More pipe bombs have been discovered outside homes in the County Derry town of Magherafelt.
The bombs were discovered on Saturday 4 August. One device was found in the mainly loyalist Leckagh estate in Magherafelt, while a second device was found at the rear of another house in Leckagh Walk.
Calling on nationalists to be on their guard, Sinn Féin's Martin McGuinness said he believes the bombs were intended for Catholic homes in the area and branded the loyalists responsible as ``deplorable and cowardly''. McGuinness said the continuing political instability was encouraging attacks by loyalists.
A North Belfast family had a lucky escape after their home was targeted by loyalist blast bombers just before midnight on Friday 3 August.
The device exploded in an entry beside the house at Rosemount Gardens, off the Antrim Road. Slight damage was caused to the wall of the house but no-one was injured. The house owner said, ``I actually froze for about four or five seconds. I got my wife up the stairs and all the children out of bed. I got them onto the floor and we just stayed upstairs''.
Glenbryn loyalists blamed for blackout
Nationalist residents of Ardoyne feared they were in danger of attack after a loyalist gang attacked an electricity substation on Alliance Road last weekend and plunged the area into darkness. Over 4,000 homes in the North Belfast area were left without electricity for two hours.
Ardoyne residents told An Phoblacht that a gang of 50 loyalists were hanging around the substation, which is close to the Holy Cross school the scene of a loyalist blockade against nationalist school children in May.
Since the trouble erupted at the Holy Cross school Alliance Avenue has been under constant attack with loyalists lobbing both pipe bombs and petrol bombs into Catholic houses. Only last Friday, 27 July, a nationalist was shot in the face when loyalists opened fire from the Glenbryn area.
Meanwhile, a bomb alert is ongoing at the Holy Cross school. As An Phoblacht goes to press, British Army bomb experts have been called to the school after a suspect device was discovered attached to the front gate.
South Belfast stabbings
South Belfast Sinn Féin councillor Alex Maskey says nationalists should be extra vigilant after it emerged that loyalists attacked a young man on Saturday night 28 July near Central Station beside the Markets area of South Belfast.
Eighteen-year-old Martin Nulty is lucky to be alive after a group of loyalists, some as young as fifteen, attacked him and four friends with broken bottles as they walked home from a night out in West Belfast. The attack left Nulty with a deep wound in his back, needing 24 stitches.
``They were only about 15 or 16 years old and my mate walked over to tell them to stop it, thinking they would run away or something. But they dragged him to the ground and started to kick and punch him,'' he said. ``By this stage there were about 25 of them.
``We ran over to help, we were trying to get our friend off the ground to run away, but they had broken bottles and started stabbing and lashing out. I thought they were going to kill us. I didn't think I was badly hurt, we were all more interested in our mate as his face was really badly cut. It was only when I felt the blood on my back I realised I had been stabbed.''
Over these past number of weeks, nationalists and their homes have been constantly attacked in the Short Strand area and the Markets.
In a separate case, two East Belfast loyalists, Richard Millar and John Denham, have been in court in Belfast charged with attempting to murder a Protestant man they believed to be a Catholic.
The pair had been to a band parade in Sandy Row and had gone to Denham's aunt's house where they got two knives, an ornamental knife and a dagger with a double-edged blade. They then walked through the nearby Markets looking for Catholics. They attacked the Carrickfergus man as he left Central Station and wounded him in the stomach.
After the pair where arrested, the RUC told Millar the wounded man was in hospital. Millar asked, ``was he a Taig?''