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Tánaiste condemns 12th July violence in Belfast

Northern Ireland Peace Process, Tánaiste Eamon Gilmore, Press Releases, Northern Ireland, 2013

The violence and disrespect for the rule of law we witnessed in Belfast last night is an affront to the decent people of that city and of this island.

The rule of law must be respected, even when people disagree with lawful decisions.

The Police Service has our solidarity and unequivocal support in its work to uphold the rule of law.  Many paid a high price in the injuries they sustained on the streets last night.

Irish government officials are working closely with British counterparts and the local institutions in Northern Ireland on these matters.

I have spoken with the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, Theresa Villiers, and to David Ford, Minister for Justice in Northern Ireland.

We are at one in our commitment and determination to uphold the law and support the police.  Our thoughts in particular are with those who were injured upholding the peace.

Political and civil leadership must never equivocate on these matters. Clear leadership, shown now, can help avert further violence this weekend.