Anger over children in IRA parade wearing paramilitary uniforms

There has been broad condemnation of an IRA commemoration parade in Belfast in which children were dressed in paramilitary-style uniforms.

By The Newsroom
Monday, 14th November 2016, 8:30 am
Updated Wednesday, 16th November 2016, 4:35 pm
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25th Anniversary Commemoration parade for IRA member Patricia Black takes place in Lenadoon on November 13th 2016 in Belfast. Photo: Kevin Scott / Presseye
A 25th Anniversary Commemoration parade for IRA member Patricia Black takes place in Lenadoon on November 13th 2016 in Belfast. Photo: Kevin Scott / Presseye

The National Republican Commemoration Committee held the 25th anniversary parade in the Shaw’s Road and Lenadoon Avenue area of west Belfast on Sunday in memory or IRA woman Patricia Black. She died on 15 November in 1991 when a bomb she was transporting in north London went off prematurely. It is thought she was targeting a nearby army band.

The parade was approved by the Parades Commission and a PSNI Land Rover was pictured in front of the procession.

High profile republicans Colin Duffy, Dee Fennell and Damien McLaughin were seen together at the event.

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TUV leader Jim Allister said: “It says a lot about the warped mind-set of Republicans that on a day when many people across Northern Ireland are remembering the sacrifice of millions for the cause of freedom in two World Wars that they should abuse those freedoms to celebrate the life of a would be murderer.

“Many in our Province shed a silent tear today when they remembered someone stolen from them by terrorists. Meanwhile Republicans in Belfast paraded to remember someone who set out to take life but was mercifully prevented from doing so.

“It is sickening that any such display could take place on any day of the year but all the more so on Remembrance Sunday.”

PSNI Inspector Roy Burnside said they were aware of the parade.

“As a matter of routine we will consider any information coming to light which may indicate if any offences have been committed,” he said.

A commission spokesman said paramilitary uniforms are forbidden in public processions. It takes past conduct into account when considering future applications by parade organisers, he added.