Petrol bomb thrown amid Union flag demos

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A petrol bomb has been thrown at police during loyalist disturbances linked to the Union flag protest.

A PSNI spokesman said officers came under attack north of Belfast in the Newtownabbey area on Saturday.

Sporadic trouble has erupted for eight weeks linked to Belfast City Council’s decision to only fly the flag on designated days like royal birthdays.

A series of protests blocked roads around Belfast but most were non-violent and police said the routes had reopened.

The PSNI spokesman said a suspicious device was thrown at a police vehicle in the Cloughfern Avenue area of Newtownabbey during an operation linked to flag protests on Friday night. It is being examined.

Approximately 10-12 petrol bombs were thrown at police in Newtownabbey and a further 19 seized by officers and taken for forensic examination.

“Police came under attack from crowds throwing stones, bottles and petrol bombs following an earlier protest in the area,” added the spokesman.

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