SECTARIANISM returned to the streets of Belfast this week, as
clashes took place between Roman Catholics and Protestants.
As the Church Times went to press on Wednesday, more
than 60 police officers had been injured during three nights of
disturb-ances. On Tuesday evening, missiles were thrown at police
lines in the Denmark Street area, where 200 people had gathered at
about 10 p.m. Late on Monday night, police fired plastic bullets
and water cannon at rioters, during clashes in which nine police
officers were injured.
The disturbances began on Sunday evening, when Loyalists
attacked a Republican marching band near a Roman Catholic church,
in the north of the city.
Twenty-six members of the Police Service of Northern Ireland
were injured in the riot, and four required hospitalisation. The
trouble flared in an area near Carlisle Circus, when the protesters
hurled stones and bottles at the police and the marching group.
The attack took place not far from the Ardoyne district, where
serious disturbances occurred on 12 July, and nationalists targeted
police after a Loyalist parade through the area.