UVF BLAMED FOR WIDESPREAD RIOTING 2011-06-21
Police Chief Superintendent Alan McCrum said the trouble was "orchestrated" by the loyalist paramilitary group, the UVF... Police Chief Supt McCrum said the trouble started after a group of young men came out of the loyalist Mount and Castlereagh Street areas, and made their way into the Catholic enclave of Short Strand... Chief Supt McCrum said police believed that members of the east Belfast UVF were involved in the trouble. "It would be a line of investigation to establish whether that was a co-ordinated and organised 'organisational' position (by the UVF leadership)," he said. "But at this point we are satisfied that at the very least members of east Belfast UVF were involved in organising the disorder." The PSNI said there was nothing to suggest that members of the Provisional IRA (PIRA) had fired shots and it was too early to say if dissident republicans were involved as their investigations were continuing. Sinn Féin MLA Alex Maskey blamed the UVF for orchestrating the trouble.
TROUBLE RE-IGNITES IN BELFAST 2011-06-21
Earlier today, the PSNI claimed loyalist paramilitaries who are supposed to be on a ceasefire organised major rioting and opened fire on police in Belfast last night... Masked Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF) members were blamed for starting the violence by attacking homes in the Catholic enclave. Two men on the loyalist side of the divide suffered gunshot wounds to the leg, officers confirmed. But bullet marks on police vehicles were blamed on the UVF and are being treated as the attempted murder of officers... ... deputy First Minister... Mr McGuinness blamed the violence on a small minority of individuals who are determined to destabilise communities. They will not be allowed to drag us back to the past, he said. I call on all those involved to take a step back and to remain calm. I support the efforts of community leaders on all sides who have been working on the ground to restore calm in east Belfast... The UVF is one of the biggest loyalist groups and despite having observed a ceasefire and having decommissioned its weapons, it was blamed for a murder last year. The Independent Monitoring Commission (IMC) found that the UVF's leadership sanctioned what was branded the public execution of loyalist Bobby Moffett, who was shot dead in front of shoppers on Belfast's Shankill Road. But it stopped short of recommending government sanction of the UVF. The recent appearance of UVF murals in east Belfast depicting masked and armed men was seen as a bid by the group to stamp its mark.
UVF BLAMED FOR SECOND NIGHT OF VIOLENCE 2011-06-22
The PSNI has blamed loyalist paramilitary group the UVF for a second night of sectarian street disturbances in east Belfast... Northern Ireland First Minister Peter Robinson and Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness have appointed one of their senior officials to engage urgently with the local communities and community leaders in the Newtownards Road and Short Strand areas... Taoiseach Enda Kenny ... said Mr Robinson and Mr McGuinness were bringing a sense of understanding and calmness to the situation. Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin said the scale of violence was worrying and said these people must not be allowed to succeed. Sinn Féin leader Gerry Adams said everyone must remain calm about the situation, but should also seek to interact more with Northern Ireland.
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