Councillor Maire Hendron comments on George Galloway’s Ulster Hall event

Alliance Councillor Maire Hendron, Belfast City Council Group Leader, said: “The Alliance Party does not condone attacks of any kind on any community or culture. George Galloway’s comments around Israel and the on-going conflict in the Middle East are particularly irresponsible, leading to increased tension around the issue.

“However the Alliance Party has never endorsed censorship and been a vocal opponent to any attempts to impose unnecessary restrictions. Alliance will stand against any attempts to censor an event or individual simply because their views do not match the views of the majority. We believe in freedom of speech, the democratic process and contracts entered into in good faith.

“Mr Galloway should be able to come to Belfast and continue with his speaking engagement as planned, but I hope he will refrain from using language that will only inflame tensions around this issue further. And if he does indulge in hate speech at the event, we will be calling for him to be prosecuted.

“This visit also allows the people of Northern Ireland the opportunity to challenge his views in a public forum.”

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