Northern Ireland news

Loyalists apply to hold protest at republican Rising parade

Loyalists clash with the PSNI on Royal Avenue in 2013
Connla Young

Up to 500 loyalists plan to hold a protest during a republican parade through Belfast city centre next month.

Loyal People's Protest say they will oppose the 'North Belfast 1916 Easter Rising Centenary Committee' march marking the calendar anniversary of the uprising on Sunday April 24.

Republicans say it will be the first Easter Rising parade to pass through the city centre.

Up to one band and 2,000 people are expected to take part in the march, while will start at Hallidays Road in north Belfast before making its way down Royal Avenue in the city centre and on to Divis Street in west Belfast.

Participants will then join a larger 'People's Parade' which will travel through west Belfast to Milltown Cemetery.

It is understood those taking part are from a variety of republican backgrounds and the march will pass the city centre before shops open at 1pm.

Orange Order members from Ballynafeigh in south Belfast also intend to march along Royal Avenue on April 24 as they make their way to and from Townsend Street in the Shankill Road area.

In 2013 loyalists and police clashed on Royal Avenue after protesters attempted to block an anti-internment parade by republicans.

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Northern Ireland news