Mixed start to marching season in North

There has been a mixed start to the first contentious Orange parade of this year.

There has been a mixed start to the first contentious Orange parade of this year.

The Tour of the North parade passed several flashpoints last night, but both loyalist and republican community workers were on the ground to ensure there was no trouble.

Sinn Féin had protested when the Parades Commission allowed the contentious parade to pass the New Lodge Road and Limestone Road junctions, but party councillors were on the streets last night to keep people calm.

The SDLP noted some minor breaches of Commission regulations by some of the loyalist bands, but there were no major incidents.

In the early hours of this morning, however, around 40 loyalists went on the rampage in the Accident and Emergency unit of Belfast’s Mater hospital.

No one was injured, but a 15 year-old boy was arrested for public order offences.

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