Northern Ireland news

Jamie Bryson's 'family' comments on tricolour burning slammed

East End bonfire in Newtownards

LOYALIST activist Jamie Bryson has been widely criticised after he tweeted a picture of a bonfire with a huge Irish tricolour and praised the "good family atmosphere".

Mr Bryson posted the picture of Saturday night's bonfire at East End in Newtownards, adding: "Well done lads, good family atmosphere. Huge bonfire!"

In response, one tweeter said: "Burning flags is generally not an event with a good family atmosphere ....for the vast majority of a modern society" while Belfast SDLP councillor Séamas de Faoite described it as "beyond depressing".

Another tweeter said it was teaching kids "bigotry and hate", adding: "How about this, you can burn the bonfires without other people's flags/emblems and still enjoy the event."

Ian Knox cartoon 10/12/21 

One post pointed out the symbolism of the tricolour, saying: "Imagine witnessing the burning of a flag whose literal meaning is peace between Catholics and Protestants, nationalists and unionists, saying 'well done' and calling it a 'good family atmosphere'."

Another post said it was a "shame" the event had been "ruined by an act of naked sectarianism", adding it was giving unionism a "bad name".

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