13/11/2018

Church-goers Pelted With Fireworks On Remembrance Sunday

People attending church on Remembrance Sunday, 11 November, were pelted with fireworks before responding police were also attacked in an incident branded as "senseless and shameful".

It happened at a church on Union Street in Magherafelt on Sunday evening.

The DUP MLA for the area, Keith Buchanan, condemned the "despicable" actions of the perpetrators, who later damaged patrol cars when the attack was directed at police.

"A band of thoughtless individuals decided that on 11th November of all days it would be a poignant tribute to the sacrifices made for our freedoms to throw fireworks at the people of Magherafelt attending a church service," police said.

"Never mind the obvious risk to property and people's safety the sheer disrespect and thoughtlessness is galling."
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The officer added in a Facebook post: "It's a bitterly disappointing black mark on an otherwise respectfully celebrated day, caused by the smallest minority of people- if that's your idea of a laugh on a Sunday evening then we really don't know what to say other than you'll be seeing a lot of us."

Mr Buchanan, the Mid Ulster MLA added: "Individuals involved chose Remembrance Sunday. A day when many from across the community gathered at churches and war memorials to pay their respects.

"The disrespect shown by the culprits is beyond comprehension and negatively taints our town, on an otherwise dignified day.

"Police were also assaulted when they arrived on the scene. This is totally unacceptable behaviour.

"I thank the PSNI for their action so far and I trust those responsible will be held accountable for their despicable actions."

Three people have been charged and are to appear in court over the incident.



(JG/CM)

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