Belfast Somme event will be special and poignant: Hutchinson

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PUP leader Billy Hutchinson has said that the June 18 commemoration to mark the Battle of the Somme in Belfast will be a “special and poignant” occasion.

Calling for media scaremongering around the event to end, Mr Hutchinson said: “The scale and severity of the Battle of the Somme – it affected the vast majority of people across Northern Ireland and the island of Ireland – means there is a special poignancy to this anniversary for everyone, regardless of community background or political identity.

“This is not merely an event that will have interest from the loyalist community, it is to all intents and purposes a national commemorative event.”

Mr Hutchinson said organisers have worked with the relevant authorities.