01 September 2005

Councillor speaks out after friend is targeted

Belfast Telegraph

DUP urges halt to sectarian attacks

By Lisa Smyth
01 September 2005

A DUP councillor last night correct called for an end to attacks on Catholic homes after a life-long friend became the latest victim of the sectarian intimidation campaign.

Councillor Jackie Mann's friend - a widow in her 50s - was targeted late on Tuesday night when three paint bombs were thrown at her Bleach Green Avenue home in Newtownabbey.

According to Cllr Mann, the woman, who does not want to be identified, has been left extremely distraught by the incident.

Mr Mann said: "My friend is very upset by what happened.

"Her daughter was standing at the kitchen window when it was hit by a paint bomb and if the glass had broken you would hate to think what might have happened.

"The people who did this have achieved nothing - her house is for sale after she lost her husband very suddenly.

"They could see the for sale sign outside the house, so it is not even as though they would be chasing her out of her house.

"We grew up together; she is a Catholic and I am a Protestant but that never mattered.

"This happened because she is a Catholic and I would just like it to stop and I know I speak on behalf of everyone in the DUP when I say it is time for these attacks to end."

Numerous Catholic-owned homes have been targeted in recent weeks and last week a 13-week-old baby was injured by broken glass and splashed with paint following an attack on his north Belfast home by a gang of hooded thugs.

The incident received widespread condemnation and prompted police to call upon community leaders and politicians to use their influence to bring the attacks to an end.

And in Ahoghill, a number of Catholic families have been forced to flee their homes after a spate of paint and petrol bomb attacks.

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