Northern Ireland news

Violence erupts in Derry for a sixth night

Police moved in as disorder erupted for a sixth night

VIOLENCE erupted in Derry for a sixth night with youths thought to be as young as eight wearing balaclavas and launching petrol bombs.

On Thursday night police said they were "experiencing further disorder in the area of the Bogside" with young people throwing devices towards PSNI Land Rovers on Bishop Street.

Motorists were asked to avoid the Lecky Road and flyover area of the city due to reported attempts to hijack vehicles.

There was a heavy police presence as the Twelfth of July parade passed the Diamond War Memorial with officers standing between a group of nationalist protesters and bands making their return journey.

One man in his thirties was arrested in the area for disorderly behaviour at about 6pm.

It comes after days of disorder in the city, with two viable devices thrown on to Derry's walls early on Thursday morning.

Police said 16 petrol bombs were thrown at officers in the vicinity of the walls overnight on Wednesday, while debris was set alight in the Lecky flyover.

Young people were also seen to have been stoking the burning wooden pallets, preventing cars from entering or exiting the roadway.

On Tuesday night six shots were fired at officers in the vicinity.

Residents of the mainly unionist enclave of the Fountain estate, which has been in the firing line of the ongoing disorder, had earlier placed some blame with the lack of government in Stormont.

However, undeterred, many took to the streets yesterday to watch as the Twelfth parade travelled across the city and through the Fountain.

Ruby Jordan (85) said she had hoped that this type of violence was over.

"I think it's the politics of today," she said.

"The assembly isn't even sitting, hospitals aren't getting their money, or the schools, what kind of example is that to be setting for young people?

They're making it seem like it's us and them."

"I was born and raised in the old Fountain and people from the other side used to come up and celebrate the Twelfth with us. It's not like that now."

Tánaiste Simon Coveney said he was "very concerned at the escalation of violence".

"The ongoing reckless endangerment of lives, which is being orchestrated by a small and violent minority, must stop," he said.

"It is shocking that young people are being allowed – and even encouraged – to engage in the dangerous us activities of the past few nights.

"I would urge all those involved to consider their actions and reflect on the damage that they are wreaking."

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