Alliance hits out at paramilitary intimidation at shared housing scheme

Alliance South Belfast MLA Paula Bradshaw has said paramilitary thugs are attempting to stamp their authority on a local shared housing scheme after a number of families moved out after intimidation.

The residents of Cantrell Close off the Ravenhill Road presented to the Housing Executive as homeless due to sectarian intimidation. The scheme, part of the Executive’s Together: Building a United Community strategy, saw UVF flags placed there over the summer.

Ms Bradshaw hit out at those behind the intimidation.

“I condemn, without hesitation or reservation, the intimidation of residents in Cantrell Close in South Belfast,” she said.

“These families moved into a mixed housing area with the expectation of a quiet and peaceful life. It is disgraceful loyalist paramilitaries have attempted to stamp their authority by threatening them if they do not leave. Now we have more families in Belfast left homeless. I call on the groups involved to lift their threat immediately.”

“The issue with flags earlier this year was clearly the forerunner to this intimidation,” added local Alliance Councillor Michael Long.

“I would hope those public representatives who stated residents did not want a public fuss over that matter now realise that was the case and join us in utterly condemning the thugs behind these threats.

“Alliance has made contact with the housing association and we will be offering our help to those families affected. I would also urge anyone with information on this matter to contact police immediately.”

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