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World British PM condemns latest Northern Ireland violence

08:45  08 april  2021
08:45  08 april  2021 Source:   afp.com

Northern Ireland is experiencing some of the worst violence it’s seen in 8 years. Here’s why.

  Northern Ireland is experiencing some of the worst violence it’s seen in 8 years. Here’s why. Brexit and suspicions of favoritism are fueling a conflict that has been simmering for years despite peace accords.The night of violence marked the eighth straight day of demonstrations and unrest in five towns and cities across Northern Ireland — a trend that has some experts worried about the possibility that the region could be seeing a sustained resurgence of sectarian violence. A 1998 peace agreement ended 30 years of such conflict, known as “the Troubles,” but unrest and violence has flared up from time to time ever since.

Britain's prime minister has condemned another night of violence in Northern Ireland, after crowds threw petrol bombs and a bus was set on fire in Belfast.

a sign over a fire: A person stands in front of the flames in Newtownabbey, Befast on April 3, during a week of rioting © PAUL FAITH A person stands in front of the flames in Newtownabbey, Befast on April 3, during a week of rioting

The violence follows a week of rioting which some have suggested is the first evidence Brexit turbulence may be boiling into unrest in the British province, where post-EU rules are stoking fury among pro-UK sections.

Crowds gathered at Lanark Way in Belfast "where a bus has been set on fire", the Police Service Northern Ireland confirmed, advising people to avoid Springfield and West Circular roads.

Northern Ireland unrest: Four key questions answered

  Northern Ireland unrest: Four key questions answered Long-simmering tensions have been brought to the boil by Brexit, worsening relations between leading political parties.On Wednesday, the fourth night of violence in a week, rioters hijacked a bus and set it on fire and hurled petrol bombs at police in the capital, Belfast. Dozens of police officers were injured.

"The way to resolve differences is through dialogue, not violence or criminality," PM Boris Johnson tweeted late Wednesday.

He added he was "deeply concerned" by the scenes.

A set of gates on the Lanark Way peace line -- walls separating nationalist and unionist groups -- were also set alight, according to the BBC's Northern Ireland correspondent.

"Crowds of a few hundred on each side throwing petrol bombs over in both directions," she said in a tweet.

She added a local priest had attempted to stop the violence: "They all greeted him with a friendly 'hi father', then returned to hurling missiles."

The BBC said the arrival of police cars mostly halted the violence.

Translink Metro said bus services in the area had been suspended, Press Association reported.

Dramatic Pictures and Videos Show Worst Unrest in Northern Ireland Since Good Friday Agreement

  Dramatic Pictures and Videos Show Worst Unrest in Northern Ireland Since Good Friday Agreement A bus was hijacked and set on fire in West Belfast on Wednesday as Northern Ireland has experienced a week of widespread unrest.A bus was hijacked and set on fire Wednesday in one of many instances of violence due to tensions mounting over Brexit and fueled by clashes between British protestant loyalist communities and Irish nationalist Catholics, according to the Associated Press, as they attacked each other and law enforcement.

First Minister Arlene Foster said: "This is not protest. This is vandalism and attempted murder. These actions do not represent unionism or loyalism."

Northern Ireland endured 30 years of sectarian conflict that killed 3,500 people.

Unionist paramilitaries, British security forces and armed nationalists -- seeking to unite the territory with the Republic of Ireland -- waged battle until a landmark peace deal in 1998.

The accord let unionists and nationalists coexist by blurring the status of the region, dissolving border checks with fellow European Union member Ireland.

Following the shock 2016 Brexit result, a special "protocol" was agreed that shifted checks away from the land border.

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This is interesting!