Vandals deface Orange hall with IRA graffiti

Vandals painted IRA graffiti on an Orange hall in Co antrim in an attack that police are treating as a hate crime.

The damage at the hall on Main street, Crumlin, was discovered at about 9.35am yesterday. Police said they are treating the vandalism as a hate crime.

The graffiti was condemned by the Grand Orange lodge of Ireland, unionist and nationalist politicians.

The Orange Order's Glenavy district secretary Tommy Ross condemned those responsible. "This is a despicable hate crime which bears all the hallmarks of a deliberate sectarian attack," he said.

Mr Ross said the attack happened just hours after the Crumlin lodge held its monthly meeting. "Those responsible should be ashamed of their actions, which are not reflective of the excellent neighbourly relations in Crumlin," he said. "We hope the community will unite in its condemnation of this attack." Sinn Fein Crumlin councillor anne Marie logue blamed "a few mindless individuals". "Those behind this sectarian attack are not representative of this community nor are they, despite scrawling IRA on the hall several times, any way republican," she said. "One thing is for sure - they will not be allowed to damage the excellent community relations that exist within the town." DUP south Antrim MP William McCrea said the attack had been "motivated by sectarian hatred". "Those who peddle such bile should be removed from our streets," he said. Police appealed for information.

* 'MINDLESS INDIVIDUALS' REPONSIBLE: The damage to the Orange hall on Main Street in Crumlin, Co Antrim, was discovered at about 9.35am yesterday

PICTURE: Justin Kernoghan/



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