Wednesday, April 7, 2021
Riots in Belfast again
Unionists set fire to the bus
The civil war in Northern Ireland has officially ended for 23 years. But in the aftermath of the post-Brexit deal, discontent among pro-British trade unionists has been growing. The mood has been declining for several days and in the evening the youths got into a street fight with the police. Not for the first time these days.
A public bus was attacked, hijacked and set on fire on Wednesday evening during a new riot in the northern Irish capital, Belfast. Police called on people to avoid much of the assembled people in the city. Videos circulating on the internet showed how a double decker bus was initially thrown by firefighters and then completely burned. A newspaper photographer was also reportedly attacked.
The incident took place at a meeting between a Protestant and a Catholic resident. Night riots have been raging in the British province of Northern Ireland for several days now, with more than 40 police officers injured. According to security officials, behind this are somewhat militant Protestant-faith groups that are also active in the drug trade.
The riot was sparked by the decision by the Attorney General’s Office not to prosecute top politicians of the Catholic-Republican Sin Fine Party for violating corona rules after attending the grand funeral of a former IRA terrorist.
Northern Ireland’s special status, as defined in the Brexit agreement, has met with opposition from some parts of the Protestant camp. The British part of the country has been part of the EU trade zone in order to prevent goods restrictions on the border with the Republic of Ireland, a member of the European Union. Instead, checks should be held at ports when goods from other parts of the UK enter Northern Ireland.
In the Northern Ireland conflict, which ended only with the Good Friday Agreement in 1998, the majority of Protestant supporters who had supported the union with Great Britain for decades, as well as Catholic supporters uniting both parts of Ireland, confronted each other. The police and the British army were drawn into the conflict. More than 3,600 were killed and nearly 50,000 were injured. The community is still deeply divided.