Claudy Orange Hall treated as ‘hate crime’

Graffiti was sprayed on the wall of Claudy Orange Hall at the weekend.

Graffiti was sprayed on the wall of Claudy Orange Hall at the weekend.

Police are treating an attack on an Orange Hall in Co Londondeery at the weekend as a hate crime.

The letters ‘IRA’ were daubed on the wall of the property on Main Street, Claudy on Friday night.

Constable McKeeman said the sectarian graffiti was spray painted onto the side of the building sometime after 10pm.

The attack has been condemned by East Londonderry MP Gregory Campbell, who branded it despicable”.

The DUP man said: “The village of Claudy is known for good relationships between communities.

“This has been the case despite the bombing atrocity over 40 years ago which those behind the graffiti now seem to want to glorify.

“This attack is a despicable attempt to divide people, it will not work.

“I trust all other public representatives will be forthright in their condemnation and call for local people to assist in ensuring this type of attack does not occur again.”

The vandalism is the sixth reported attack on Orange property so far this year in Northern Ireland.

A Lodge spokesman said: “This is sadly yet another example of the intolerant sectarianism displayed by a minority who continue to manifest their hatred towards the Orange Institution, by attacking our properties on a regular basis.

“The mindless idiots responsible offer nothing through such criminality, only heartache and division. Their actions must be universally condemned.”

Officers have appealed for witnesses to contact police at Strand Road, Londonderry on 101 quoting reference number 567 of 22/04/17 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.