THE playing of the sectarian Famine Song by a band taking part in an Remembrance Day parade outside a catholic church has been condemned by nationalist politicians, clergy and community leaders.

The Apprentice Boys last night described the incident in which the Dunmurry Protestant Boys struck up the controversial tune as “unfortunate ” and a ” minor infringement ” and hit out at attacks it says were carried out against participants in its parade. In a statement the order condemned nationalist protesters it accused of breaching determinations. And contrary to reports, the organisation said it had not expelled the band involved in the playing of the music. ” It is unfortunate that a minor infringement which was down to a breakdown in communication has allowed others to look at the outcome of yesterday’s remembrance parade with a negative outcome,” an Apprentice Boys spokesman said. It was the second time the song – banned in Scotland – had been played outside St Patrick‘s church in central Belfast in the last six months.

On the Twelfth of July, the Young Conway Volunteers were filmed playing the Famine Song while marching in circles outside St Patrick’s. The administrator at St Patrick’s on Donegall Street said he was disappointed at the conduct of the band but optimistic that talking would continue. However, Fr Michael Sheehan said people in the area were losing patience with the loyal orders after repeated flouting of determinations. ” I am disappointed that the determination has been broken again. This is the fourth time, the fourth month and the fourth parade this has happened,” he said. The Apprentice Boys said its members moved to stop the band from playing the song and expressed its concern ”


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