Hendron: DUP continues to play politics with the Cenotaph

Alliance Councillor Maire Hendron has criticised the DUP for playing politics with remembrance, after the Party again raised the issue of the Union Flag at the Cenotaph.

The group leader on Belfast City Council said: “I am disappointed the DUP has again raised this issue, especially when the RBL has publicly outlined its opposition to the proposal. This move is clearly about keeping the flag debate on the agenda, but in doing this the DUP has proved it is prepared to play politics with remembrance.

“Changing how the flag flies at the Cenotaph is not only against equality advice, but is also against the wishes of the Royal British Legion (RBL) which made it clear it does not want the Cenotaph politicised during a recent City Hall consultation.

“It is clear from what DUP representatives have said tonight, that they do not respect the right of other parties to have their own position on issues, or the democratic process when decisions are made.

“When it comes to the Union Flag at Belfast City Hall, Alliance stands firm that any changes to the number of days it flies must be determined by the Westminster Department of Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS).

“The Executive must legislate for the flying of the Union Flag at each Council headquarters, creating an agreed policy for them all. In the absence of legislation Alliance cannot accept any changes to how the flag flies at City Hall, unless achieved through DCMS. It is the correct channel to enact change and we have already written to request the Anniversary of the Somme, 1 July, be added to the list either in Northern Ireland or across the United Kingdom as a whole.”

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