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Royal Irish Bigotry
This is the revealing regimental picture that sets out starkly and clearly the vivid reality of today’s Royal IrishRegiment. The picture shows over 70 members of the RIR — formerly the UDR — posing with an official Drumcree standard which reads:
‘Drumcree: Here We Stand, We Can Do No Other. For Religious and Civil Liberty’.
We have obtained three other similar pictures.
The Ministry of Defence is spending thousands of pounds in an advertising campaign aimed at encouraging Catholics to join the regiment. This picture says more about the regiment than any words and pictures ever could.
The Ministry of Defence has told us they will act if the pictures are found to be genuine. We have the prints — and the negatives. Breandán Mac Cionnaith is to present copies of the pictures to the Irish and British governments. He has called for the abolition of the regiment. We join him in that call. The pretence that the regiment is changed can be sustained no more.
Mac Cionnaith Calls for RIR Disbandment
Breandán Mac Cionnaith has called for the disbandment of the RIR after viewing copies of the photographs obtained by the Andersonstown News this week which show members of the regiment posing beside a Drumcree banner.
The Garvaghy Road Residents’ Coalition spokesman said the photographs were unsurprising evidence of the sectarian nature of the force.
“Since its inception, the UDR/RIR has acted as an armed legal loyalist militia, whose members have a record of involvement in some of the most heinous sectarian murders carried out against the Catholic community across the North,” he said. “That such a force continues to be maintained by the British government raises serious questions concerning the Blair administration’s commitment to creating a just society in the North. The force has always been viewed with suspicion and fear by nationalists, particularly in County Armagh. This photograph demonstrates again the one-sided and partisan nature of this force.”
Cllr Mac Cionnaith said he intended forwarding copies of the photograph to both the Irish and British governments.
“We will raise this issue with Peter Mandelson when we meet him in just over a week’s time. “We will also be calling on the Irish government, along with the SDLP and Sinn Féin to lobby for the immediate abolition of this loyalist militia.”
Meanwhile, the Ministry of Defence said that if the pictures proved to be genuine the matter would be “rigorously investigated”. “We expect the highest standard of conduct from our soldiers,” said the spokesman. “We can confirm that the RIR welcomes recruits from across the entire community and indeed from north and south of the border.”
- Original source