Race Tension
UVF parade may be used to attack ethnic minorities

Right wing fanatics are planning to use a weekend South Belfast UVF march as cover to launch a fresh wave of attacks on ethnic minorities.

On Saturday 20 bands and 500 loyalists will march from Sandy Row into Donegall Pass in honour of murdered UVF man John Hanna.

The Donegall Road native was shot dead by republicans at his home in the area in 1991.

The massive parade – one that has no previous history – falls on the third anniversary of the September 11 Twin Towers attacks.

We can reveal that on Tuesday the PSNI warned ethnic minorities they could be targeted on the 9/11 anniversary by local extremists seeking racial revenge. The South Belfast UVF, who will be heavily represented at Saturday’s parade, have been the driving force behind the dramatic rise in racist attacks in the south of the city.

During the past year they have pipe-bombed and petrol-bombed ethnic homes and extorted cash from Asian businessmen. In April the UVF’s South Belfast commander was stood down by the organisation because of his refusal to call a halt to the racist attacks.

However, the attacks have continued.

The Anti-Racism Network’s Davy Carlin said he has received information fascists involved with paramilitaries could target the ethnic community at the weekend.

“Our information has been that some far right fascist organisations and other individuals, who are involved in paramilitary organisations, may use September 11 to attack members of the minority ethnic community - the most vulnerable members in society,” said Davy.

PUP leader David Ervine is another concerned by the threats.
“Although I can’t confirm it, the suggestion is that it may be around September 11,” he said.

“It’s clear that ethnic minorities have been warned by police. Those who work in congregated groups have been warned first, and that’s quite a worry.”

The organisers of Saturday’s loyalist march are the South Belfast Young Conquerors - a band that carries the standards of the UVF. Hours after their last march along the same route at the end of July drunken loyalists put a Donegall Pass family out of their home. This incident has added to the ethnic fears that fascists may infiltrate the parade.

Ironically, the John Hanna march will pass by the spot were the UVF attempted to kill a leading Donegall Road loyalist last week. Stephen Clarke was seriously injured after being shot three times in the upper body as he sat in a car outside Avenue Taxis on the Donegall Road.

Journalist:: Staff Reporter

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