ORANGE ORDER TO HOLD PROTEST IN WOODVALE

Orangmen returning to north Belfast on the Twelfth of July

Orangmen returning to north Belfast on the Twelfth of July

THE Orange Order has said it plans to hold a protest at the point it has been banned from parading past in north Belfast on Saturday.

In a statement the County Grand Master of Belfast George Chittick stated the demonstration “must be peaceful”.

It comes after the Parades Commission refused to allow the Orange Order parade past the Ardoyne shopfronts for a second time.

The Order applied for the parade on Saturday to complete a return parade they were banned from making on the 12 July.

On Saturday, leaflets will be handed out to all supporters of the Orange Lodges and Bands involved making clear the conditions of the protest.

“The only way the Orange family will achieve their objectives; to see the Ligoniel lodges home and the Parades Commission disbanded, is by peaceful means, anyone who is coming to the Parade must be committed to protesting peacefully and dispersing when asked to do so,” Mr Chittick stated.

“The Parades Commission rewarded violence, we do not want their rewards, we want their removal and the only way that will be achieved is through a broad based peaceful campaign by the Protestant, unionist and loyalist community; united, committed and disciplined.”

The leaflet explains that anyone involved in the protest must stop when directed by marshals, where the national anthem will be played and then the crowd will disperse.

“No matter what the provocation, violence is not the answer,” the leaflet states.

When reviewing the application, the parades watchdog heard from the Crumlin Ardoyne Residents Association, Sinn Féin and the SDLP and received a written representation from loyalist Woodvale residents.

It said it was “disappointed” not to receive representations from the Orange Order or from any unionist parties.

Joe Marley of CARA has said the Orange Order now needs to engage in dialogue.

Sinn Féin’s Gerry Kelly also said the Parades Commission’s decision was “sensible”.

Following Friday’s Twelfth parades there were five consecutive nights of disorder in which 71 police officers were injured and more than 75 people were arrested.

Last year, there was major rioting when a token return parade was allowed to pass the Ardoyne shopfronts.

Order members have continued to hold protests in the area throughout the week.

NI Secretary of State Theresa Villiers warned on Friday that further violence would only damage efforts to attract jobs and investment to the region.

“People who break the law should be in no doubt that there will be arrests and prosecutions. And those who are convicted risk prison,” she said.

“It also has a serious impact on the reputation of Northern Ireland as we try and compete in the global race for investment and jobs.”

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