Attacks on Fire Service ‘disappointing’ says Lyttle

Alliance MLA Chris Lyttle has said he’s “extremely disappointed” that two Fire Service crews came under attack after a night that saw the service deal with a significant increase of bonfire-related calls.

It’s been revealed crews came under attack in Belfast and Larne.

Chris Lyttle MLA said: “I want to commend Fire Service crews across Northern Ireland who faced extremely challenging circumstances, yet handled last night’s bonfires with clear professionalism. There was never any doubt that they were not in control, despite a significant increase in incidents.

“Yet why some felt the need to attack those there to serve the community is beyond me. It is regrettable that those tasked with ensuring the safety of everyone had the additional pressures of dealing with this type of behaviour. Those involved should recognise the impact their actions could have had.

“While it is satisfying to know the 11th night tradition passed without any serious incident, constant risk management year on year is not a sustainable approach. No-one is against safe cultural expressions, but the fact bonfires are still cultivating fear and endorsing hate – including the burning of Alliance posters and references to other parties – signals a legal framework for bonfires and other cultural expressions is urgently needed.”

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