Petrol bomb thrown at officers as anti-internment bonfire dismantled


A petrol bomb was thrown at police in west Belfast as council contractors dismantled an anti-internment bonfire on Thursday.

Two males, aged 13 and 19, were arrested following the incident in the Albert Street area.

SDLP MLA Alex Attwood said that bonfires were not wanted by the community and “represent a way of recognising the past that we should move away from”.

Mr Attwood said: “The disruption and anxiety caused by west Belfast bonfires has only one remedy – that is they should be taken down and if not there should be acceptance that bonfires should not be built again.

“Bonfires are not what the community want, they create health and safety issues, they are hostile to the environment and they could be a magnet for anti-social activity.”

The West Belfast MLA added: “Our society must move away from how some recognise the past – militarism through murals or bands or commemorations – those who promote a false, revisionist narrative of the past, be it in terror groups or state agencies, even bonfires.

“We need to confront and address all of this.”

A PSNI spokesman said: “Officers were at the scene as a third party contractor removed items from a bonfire in the Albert Street area of west Belfast.

“A petrol bomb was thrown. Two males aged 13 and 19 have been arrested on suspicion of riotous behaviour and possession of a petrol bomb.”

The spokesman added: “There were no injuries. There are no further details at present.”