Twelfth Parades 2009
14 Jul 2009
Commenting on today's parades Assistant Chief Constable Alistair Finlay said it was disappointing that isolated outbreaks of violence had marred the day for all communities.
ACC Finlay said: "Right across Northern Ireland there were hundreds of parades that passed off peacefully. People not involved in parades or protests were also allowed to get on with their lives. This was down to a lot of work by communities, local representatives and Police.
"However, it is very disappointing that there were a minority of people, in North Belfast, Derry, Armagh, Rasharkin and other parts of Northern Ireland who showed total disregard for local communities. They displayed the worst possible face of Northern Ireland - a face of bigotry, sectarianism and intolerance that is not representative of the vast majority of people who have moved on and embraced a peaceful future.
"It is communities who pay the price. It is their lives that are disrupted and it is their houses, businesses and local amenities that are damaged.
"In North Belfast, my officers, who were doing their best to protect all of our communities, came under attack in the area of the Ardoyne shop fronts by a crowd throwing paint, bricks, bottles and petrol bombs. A number have been injured. A live round is also believed to have been fired at Police.
"A number of AEPs were fired and we deployed water cannon to bring the situation under control.
"I would ask everyone to continue to work with Police, politicians, communities and local representatives to restore calm this evening and over the coming days.
"Police will carry out a rigorous investigation, which will include the examination of CCTV footage, and will work towards bringing all those found breaking the law to justice.
"It is crucial that people continue to engage in dialogue and find long-term acceptable solutions to ensure that the disgraceful scenes we have witnessed are confined to the past once and for all. That is what the vast majority of people in Northern Ireland want."
Thirteen Police officers were injured during the day in disturbances in Rasharkin, Londonderry and North Belfast.
At Rasharkin Police were attacked by a number of youths during the return parade shortly after 6pm. Three officers received minor injuries when they were struck by stones and masonry. Up to six petrol bombs were also thrown at Police. One male was arrested by Police and will be the subject of a report to the PPS.
In Londonderry Police dealt with a disturbance in the Butcher's Gate area. A male officer was injured during this disturbance. His injuries are believed to be of a minor nature.
Disorder flared at the Ardoyne shop fronts in North Belfast shortly after 4pm in the afternoon. Nine officers were injured and a total of eighteen AEP rounds were discharged by Police. Water canon was also used. One gunshot was fired at Police during the disorder. The area was reported quiet at 2.00am.