Northern Ireland news

Retired boxer Carl Frampton calls for 'united voice' from politicans in a bid to ease loyalist unrest

Retired east Belfast boxer Carl Frampton has called for money to be "pumped" into working class areas in a bid to ease ongoing tensions, following scenes of civil unrest in recent days Picture by Niall Carson/PA Wire

Retired north Belfast boxer Carl Frampton has called for money to be "pumped" into working class areas in a bid to ease ongoing tensions following scenes of civil unrest.

The popular fighter, who is originally from the Tigers Bay area, said the situation could be helped by providing children and young people with educational programmes, jobs and opportunities.

The 34-year-old, who announced his retirement from boxing earlier this month, was speaking after loyalist youths attacked police during disturbances on Monday night in the Lanark Way area of west Belfast.

Mr Frampton, who admitted he had taken part in rioting as a youth, said more investment and leadership was needed.

He said much of the the rioting is "recreational" as "there is not a lot to do in some of these areas for kids".

"I think projects and money needs to be pumped into these kind of working class areas to help kids with educational programmes, whatever it may be, with jobs, with opportunities and this can be sorted out," he told the BBC.

"I wouldn't say it's an easy fix but I think that a united voice from politicians, especially on this matter, and it can be repaired.

The boxing star said he would consider setting up a foundation or engaging with community projects in the future to help young people in working class areas.

"Hopefully that can be something that I can think about in the future," he said.

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