Irish American Information Service

**It's interesting to note that whenever nationalists defend themselves against loyalist attacks, they are called "equally to blame."

09/03/03 14:27 EST
A Catholic man was hit in the face with a brick by a gang of loyalists during renewed sectarian violence in north Belfast.

The man suffered cuts and bruising after being hit in the face in the Deerpark Road area of the city.

The disturbances came as a Catholic family was moving out of the area, following a series of attacks and threats against them in the past week.

Windows in a number of Catholic homes along the road have been attacked since last weekend.

A number of homes along Deerpark Road have had their windows broken and are now boarded up.

Sinn Féin blamed loyalists for the violence, but community workers insist republican gangs are equally to blame.

Sinn Féin North Belfast representative Gerry Kelly has called on Unionists politicians and community leaders to end the campaign of intimidation and attack being orchestrated by paramilitaries against people living in the Deerpark Road area.

Mr Kelly said: "Thirty years ago unionist paramilitaries tried to burn people out their homes in exactly this same area. This week alone 2 families have been forced to leave the area because of attacks and intimidation. These attacks are clearly being orchestrated by the UDA. Today's attack is a concerted attack on this community. It is very serious."

"It is time that Unionist political leaders and community leaders used their energies to bring an end to this anti- nationalist pogrom."

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