FRESH video footage of a loyalist flute band outside a Belfast Catholic church shows two police officers watching as a sectarian tune is played while band members march in a circle. The 15-minute clip of the Shankill Road-based flute band Young Conway Volunteers was taken by a second man, who was observing the parade from nearby North Queen Street.
The resident who recorded the film is to pass the footage to the Police Ombudsman‘s Office in relation to a complaint about the PSNI handling of the incident. The footage shows that the band not only played the anti-Irish Famine Song but prior to that played The Sash as they halted at the doors of St Patrick‘s Catholic Church on Donegall Street. There was outrage after a shorter video clip taken by North Belfast man JJ Magee was posted online.The Sinn Fein member was attacked as he filmed the band marching in a circle and playing The Famine Song.
However, the longer video clip passed to the Irish News shows two uniformed officers standing outside the church throughout the incident. It also shows nationalist residents of Carrickhill remonstrating with police over the behaviour of the band and asking why they are not being moved on. ” Police cannot comment on this footage without seeing it,” a police spokesman said. ” Anyone with a complaint about police actions should report it to the Police Ombudsman’s Office.” A spokesman for the loyalist flute band has claimed they were not aware St Patrick’s was a place of worship and that the song they were playing was not sectarian but the Beach Boys ‘ Sloop John B. He said it was ” pure chance ” that the band had come to a halt outside the church. ” In fact many of our members only realised we had been playing outside the chapel when it was reported by the local media,” he said.
WITH MANY THANKS TO : ALLISON MORRIS, IRISH NEWS.
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