Northern Ireland news

Call for Billy Wright flags to be removed from Dungannon main road

A flag with Billy Wrights image on it in Dungannon Picture Mal McCann.
Connla Young

A Co Tyrone man who narrowly escaped death in an LVF attack has called for flags glorifying Billy Wright to be taken down.

Flags bearing the image of the loyalist group's founder were recently put up on lampposts on the main road into Dungannon from the M1.

They were visible yesterday on either side of the busy route near a junction leading to Dungannon Park, a popular destination for local people.

Wright was shot inside the H-Blocks by the INLA in December 1997.

Later that day loyalists carried out a revenge attack at the Glengannon Hotel near Dungannon.

Ruairi Cummings was 17 when gunmen seriously injured his father Christy and killed another man, Seamus Dillon, outside the venue.

He was standing just feet away when the shooting took place.

Ruairi Cummings said the Wright flags should be taken down.

“These flags and emblems have been put up in an area where they were will cause more hurt, offence and insult to all the families, ” he said.

“How are we meant to move on as a society together whenever these things are still happening?"

Independent councillor Barry Monteith said: "Images of mass murderers at the entrance to public facilities are an attempt to send a message to Irish people that they are not welcome in their own land.

“Use of flags like this are akin to the Ku Klux Klan using the confederate flags to intimidate African Americans in the US.”

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Northern Ireland news