Three held after Ulster mobs clash

Three people have been arrested for riotous behaviour following clashes in Northern Ireland.

Three people have been arrested for riotous behaviour following clashes in Northern Ireland.

The clashes between rival nationalist and loyalist mobs happened in a flashpoint area of north Belfast.

Police in full riot gear moved in when trouble flared at the Limestone Road, scene of a number of sectarian incidents in recent months.

The road was closed for a time as officers separated the opposing factions.

A police spokeswoman said they were remaining in the area as a number of rival groups were still present.

It is believed the three arrested were nationalists. Both sides blamed each other for starting the violence.

Sinn Fein councillor Gerard Brophy claimed the trouble started when a crowd of up to 60 loyalists armed with bricks, bottles and baseball bats attacked nationalist homes in Park End, Clamchattan Street and Newington Street.

He said the attack was clearly orchestrated and the crowd included a number of skinheads from the neo-Nazi Combat 18 group.

"Police arrived in huge numbers and started attacking nationalists out defending their homes."

Loyalist community worker Eddie McClean described Mr Brophy's claims as "absolute nonsense" and said the trouble began when nationalist youths attacked cars in the Tiger's Bay area. "Take it from me, there was nobody from Combat 18 here. That's just propaganda."

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