UK News: Orange Lodge slam parade ban claiming Scots Protestants are "under attack" - PressFrom - United Kingdom

UK NewsOrange Lodge slam parade ban claiming Scots Protestants are "under attack"

13:30  12 september  2019
13:30  12 september  2019 Source:

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Orange Lodge slam parade ban claiming Scots Protestants are "under attack" © Getty Images Members of the Orange Order take part in a Glasgow parade

The Orange Lodge have vowed to fight a parade ban claiming Scottish protestants were “under attack from religious persecution”.

Senior members of the Grand Orange Lodge of Scotland have claimed is illegal.

On Wednesday, the council took the decision to not allow the processions following advice from Police Scotland . Now, Orangemen are set to band together with loyalists who have organised a protest against the decision for Saturday morning in George Square.

Jim McHarg, Grand Master of the Orange Lodge said: “It is a sad day for democracy when a narrow-minded band of anti-unionist nationalist councillors, aided and abetted by Police Scotland, abuse the law and introduce illegal measures that curtail a citizen’s right of peaceful assembly.”

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“For over 200 years, Orange Lodges in Scotland have existed in many parts of Scotland, standing up for the rights of the working classes.

"Our parades are the way we exercise our right of assembly, and our membership takes part in our parades with great respect and decorum.”

Orange Lodge slam parade ban claiming Scots Protestants are "under attack" © Getty Images Female members of the Orange Order march in Glasgow in July

The group go on to say that councillors in the city have “weaponised” what the Order claim are ‘protests’ by republican groups as a means to ban marches across the city.

They also moved to distance themselves from groups involved in .

However, both the Order and loyalist groups look set to be present outside the council chambers on Saturday.

Mr McHarg added: “Recently, we have seen a concerted campaign by Irish republican supporting groups to turn up at our parades under the banner of a ‘protest’, but cleverly designed to raise tension and cause fear and alarm to our members and the protestant communities of Glasgow.

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“Nationalist councillors in Glasgow, supported by Police Scotland, effectively weaponised these protests by sending out a message that they would use the threat of protests to ban protestant parades.

“This action led to the chaotic scenes in the streets of Glasgow as a hard-core element from both sides of the argument used this weaponised protest action against each other.

“Whilst the Orange Order has played no part in any of the incidents in Glasgow in recent weeks, we have watched the situation deteriorate and we have witnessed tensions grow within our own community, a community that feels under attack from religious persecution.

“However, this new move by Glasgow City Council to ban parades outright is something we cannot ignore.  We will not stand idly by whilst our democratic right of free assembly is curtailed by politically motivated anti-unionist nationalists.

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A government ban on a parade organized by pro-British unionists has opened old wounds about People walk past a burnt out car on the shore road after the police came under attack from Loyalists To hit back at the commission, the Orange Order called for a protest at the location of the banned

“We were only informed this afternoon that Glasgow City Council was intending to call an emergency meeting to take this action.  This was a deliberate move to prevent us having any time to prepare a response or argue our case.

“Is this the open and free Scotland of many cultures that the nationalists tell us they support?

Orange Lodge slam parade ban claiming Scots Protestants are "under attack" © Getty Images The 329th Battle of the Boyne Parade on July 6, 2019 in Glasgow

“The Orange Order calls on our membership to resist attempts by nationalists to suppress our community, our culture, our religion and our voice.

“This Saturday, as Grand Master, I will be standing side by side with a recently established group – Scottish Protestants Against Discrimination (SPAD) and I call on our members to get behind this event and join us at 9:45am as we meet to protest outside the City Chambers in Glasgow.

“This is not a parade that requires notice, instead, this will be a peaceful assembly under the Human Rights Act.  Come along, be seen, wear your colours and let it be known that we will not be bullied off our City streets.

“We live in a country of religious freedoms, we support the right of any citizen of Scotland to practice any religion of their choice or none.  All we ask is that this same tolerance is shown to the Protestant communities of Scotland.

“We ask all loyal orders to support us on Saturday as we stand up for the rights of our communities”.

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