Ulster Awake leaflets distributed in Co Antrim branded racist

Sinn Féin MLA Oliver McMullan has described leaflets distributed in Larne, Co Antrim, at the weekend as a hate crime
Connla Young

SECTARIAN and racist leaflets have been distributed in a Co Antrim town.

Members of 'Ulster Awake' handed out the offensive leaflets across Larne at the weekend.

East Antrim assembly member Oliver McMullan said he has reported the incident to the PSNI as a hate crime and believes the leaflets could incite race-hate violence.

Ulster Awake handed out similar leaflets last year.

The group, which has a ‘white power'-style cross in its logo along with a red hand symbol, also attacks unionist politicians who share power with republicans.

The port town of Larne is home to an immigration detention centre.

“I think it’s pure sectarian and pure racism and it’s intimidatory and it could make a minority in society react to it,” said Mr McMullan.

The Sinn Féin MLA challenged those responsible to “come out publicly and tell me what’s the benefit to the area other than bringing sectarianism and hate”.

The group’s Facebook page contains numerous messages of a racist and sectarian nature.

One of the Ulster Awake leaflets

One post describes potential asylum seekers as ”a selection of foreign rapists, paedophiles, thieves, woman beaters and various other criminals”.

A spokeswoman for the PSNI said they are not treating the matter as a hate crime “at this stage”.

"Police are making enquiries following a report of leaflets being distributed in the Larne area,” he said.

“This has been reported to us as a hate incident.”

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