27/02/2006

Police investigate Portadown riot

Police are investigating disturbances in Portadown town centre that are believed to be connected with street violence in Dublin on Saturday.

Around 100 people were involved in rioting which broke out at around 1am on Sunday morning.

Bottles, bricks and other missiles were thrown as police forced back rival factions in the crowd. Two police and a number of other vehicles were damaged.

Six police officers were injured during the incident. One officer suffered what were described as "serious" facial injuries. A female police officer was forced to the ground where she was kicked and punched.

Police said that two men were arrested. One 30-year-old man was charged with disorderly behaviour and assault. He is due to appear before Craigavon Magistrates Court next month. A second man, aged 34, was released on bail pending further inquiries.

The DUP MP for Upper Bann David Simpson said nationalists and loyalists had been involved in the disturbances.

It is understood that the trouble may be linked to the riot in Dublin earlier on Saturday afternoon in which 20 people were injured.

(SP/GB)

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