Following last night’s outbreak of violence in the small County Down fishing village of Kilkeel, a senior member of the Alliance Party has urged the local Protestant community to “fully support” their Catholic neighbours.
And Dr. Philip McGarry, who is the Alliance Party President, said it was imperative that members of the local Protestant clergy show “total solidarity” with the village’s small Catholic community.
The Alliance man also urged members of the Protestant clergy to do “everything in their power” to prevent further outbreaks of sectarian violence.
“Catholic communities in towns like Kilkeel and Carrickfergus at the present time feel isolated and threatened,” said the former Belfast City Councillor.
“They are aware that the security forces have been unable to maintain their rule of law and they have grave fears about will happen over the coming weekend.
“I would also like to say that the Alliance Party welcomes recent contributions made by the main Church leaders. However, it is essential that local Protestant clergy are also active.
“I would further ask the local Protestant clergy in areas where there has been violence and intimidation against Roman Catholics, to show support for their neighbours in a direct and practical fashion,” he added.
Dr. McGarry also urged members of the local Protestant clergy to “actively seek” to ensure that there is no repetition of the violence which, he claims is, “spiralling out of control”.