DPP hold ‘robust’ meeting despite protest

A protester tries to gain entry to yesterday's DPP meeting at Derry City Council offices. (2110PG62)
A protester tries to gain entry to yesterday's DPP meeting at Derry City Council offices. (2110PG62)
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The District Police Partnership successfully hosted a meeting in Derry City Centre for the first time in almost two years yesterday.

Several previous meetings were disrupted by dissident republican protests.

Sinn Fein Councillor and DPP member, Maeve McLaughlin, described the meeting at Strand Road Council Offices as “fairly good and robust.”

A heavy police presence surrounded the council building while around 20 protestors waving ‘32 County Sovereignty Movement’ placards attempted to enter it. They were informed the meeting was full to capacity.

There was some pushing and shoving as PSNI officers closed the gate to the building. A number of fireworks and ‘stink bombs’ were then thrown amid chants of SSRUC and whistle blowing.

A spokesperson for the 32CSM said: “We turned up for a peaceful protest and were denied entry to a public meeting.”

Asked why fireworks were brought to a peaceful protest the spokesperson replied: “We must attract as much attention as possible in order to highlight the issues of political policing. Bangers were only thrown after the PSNI used heavy-handed tactics.” There were no arrests.