News

DUP councillor Christopher Stalford criticises shop selling Union flag toilet paper

John Monaghan
11 March, 2016 01:00

A DUP councillor has criticised a west Belfast gift shop for 'glorifying' a paramilitary group by displaying an 'IRA' sign in its window.

The Fenians restaurant and gift shop, which is selling a range of items for the commemoration of the Easter Rising, said that the logo stands for "Irish and Republican Accessories."

DUP Belfast councillor Christopher Stalford said that "some of the excuses given for the use of the word IRA will not carry much water with the general public."

"Anything which glorifies or eulogises the actions of people who were involved in terrorism will cause offence to a huge majority of people in society, regardless of their political affiliations," he said.

Mr Stalford added: "The owners should reflect on whether it is appropriate that they should profit from a group which was responsible for 49 percent of all deaths in the Troubles."

The shop is on the corner of Beechmount Avenue, known locally as 'RPG Avenue' due to the frequency of IRA attacks which took place in the vicinity at the height of he Troubles.

While the majority of the merchandise on sale relates to historic republican figures and 1916 there are a number of items of questionable taste including 'Union jack toilet tissue'.

"We've had a lot of positive fed back even from the local community and tourists," a staff member told the Irish News.

"The play on the letters IRA was just to draw people in, 90 per cent of the tourists we encounter are political tourists who are interested in the history of area, the Falls Road and Irish republicanism in general."

11 March, 2016 01:00 News

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