Two murals on Shankill burned in overnight attack

Fire damage to mural
Fire damage to mural

Police have appealed for information after two murals were damaged by fire overnight on the lower Shankill.

The murals were damaged in the Beverley Street/Northumberland Street area by thugs setting fires against them.

A post on Greater Shankill ACT Facebook page says: "One mural features the Polish Airmen who fought in the Battle of Britain, the other is dedicated to J.H. Patterson, a famous British soldier who went on to lay the foundations for what would become the IDF.

"Those who sneaked into our community last night are guilty of hate crimes. Their intolerance of other cultures is akin to fascism, those who shout about equality on a daily basis should practice what they preach!!"

Local DUP MLA William Humphrey added on social media: "Appalled & disgusted at overnight attacks on two murals in the lower Shankill.

"These evil attacks, by ignorant people, could be seen as racist and anti-Semitic. Must be condemned by all right thinking people!"

Fire damage to mural

Fire damage to mural

DUP Councillor Brian Kingston added: "Disgraceful arson attack on murals at Northumberland St / Beverley St, which honour Polish airmen in RAF & John Henry Patterson who commanded Jewish Units within British Army.

"Those responsible will not set the agenda with their sectarian, racist & anti-Semitic act of vandalism."

A PSNI spokesman said: "Police received a report of damage to murals at Beverley Street in west Belfast on Wednesday 13th June.

"It is believed that two murals were set alight and badly damaged sometime overnight between Tuesday 12th and Wednesday 13th June.

"Enquiries are ongoing into the matter and police would ask anyone with any information to contact them at Tennent Street on 101 quoting reference number 216 13/06/18 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111."