Tyrone GAA boss apologises over IRA song

Tyrone manager Mickey Harte
Tyrone manager Mickey Harte
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Tyrone Gaelic football manager Mickey Harte has apologised over a video showing players singing a rebel song as a band parade passes their bus in Aughnacloy on Saturday.

In the footage ‘Come Out Ye Black And Tans’ is playing over the bus’ speakers as the vehicle is stopped in the middle of a march, with players joining in.

The song features the lyrics: “Come out ye Black and Tans, come out and fight me like a man; Show your wife how you won medals down in Flanders; Tell them how the IRA made you run like hell away; From the green and lovely lanes of Killeshandra.”

In a statement to the BBC Mr Harte apologised “to anyone who has been offended by the unacceptable behaviour... the matter is being dealt with in-house and we won’t be making any further comment.”

Fermanagh and South Tyrone DUP MLA Arlene Foster said the footage “does not represent many people who support GAA”.

The parade outside the bus is believed to have been organised by Lisgenny Flute Band and took place after 8.30pm – a time deliberately chosen to avoid disruption to mass-goers. Fourteen bands took part.

Mrs Foster said: “The bands were unaware of the singing or the comments until this video appeared.

“It was their annual parade. There are many children in the bands.

“The parade is about the music and performance in front of their neighbours. It is not about offending anyone.”