15 April 2005

Daily Ireland

McCartneys’ ‘hostile crowd’ claims rejected

The Short Strand residents involved in an exchange of words with the McCartney family on Wednesday afternoon have described as “rubbish" media reports that a dozen people were involved.
Reports in yesterday’s media said a dozen republicans surrounded the McCartney sisters as they handed out leaflets appealing for information about their brother Robert’s murder.
Robert McCartney was killed outside Magennis's Bar on 30 January in a row with republicans.
Paula McCartney said the crowd gathered and “screamed abuse" at the family.
She also said one of the crowd had threatened to put her out of the area and senior republicans were among the crowd.
However, Short Strand resident Mary King, who was involved in the incident, said only four people were involved – herself, her sister and two children.
“These reports are completely false," she said.
“The only people there was me, my sister and two kids. My sister was handed a leaflet by the McCartneys and she let it drop to the ground, as is her choice.
“As soon as that happened the McCartneys started shouting abuse and one of them behaved really aggressively. They were shouting and swearing at us and then my son came and told us to leave it.
“I couldn’t believe it when I read there was a dozen people there and that threats had been made. Words were exchanged for sure, but that was it and it came from both sides.
“You can take it from me, I was there and I know what exactly what happened. There was no crowd of men, no senior republicans or otherwise.”
However, Paula McCartney maintained yesterday that a “hostile crowd gathered" and that insults about her dead brother triggered the row.
“They started calling Robert a coward and said the men who killed him were real men. They are fascists, we told them they should be ashamed of themselves. The men joined in and starting shouting sexual abuse at us. It was a disgrace, we are going through enough without this sort of behaviour.”






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