‘Replace hate and anger with love’

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The son of Martin McGuinness has called on those who placed an image of his late father on a bonfire pyre in Derry to turn away from hate and anger.

Fiachra McGuinness made the comments following outrage that a poster promoting the cancer services fundraising annual Chieftains Walk in Martin McGuinness’ memory was placed on the bonfire in Tullyally, along with numerous Irish Tricolour and other flags.

Fiachra McGuinness took to Twitter to send a message to those who placed his father’s image on the bonfire.

He urged those involved to “Replace Fear, Hate and Anger with Love and you will be Free”.

Sinn Féin meanwhile have called on unionist politicians to condemn the ‘hatemongers’ who placed an image of the late Deputy First Minister on the bonfire, which was erected ahead of the annual Relief of Derry commemorations in the city on Saturday.

Sinn Féin Foyle MLA Karen Mullan described the incident as “sickening”. She said: “I utterly condemn those who have erected an image of Martin McGuinness on a bonfire in the Tullyally area of Derry.

“This display is particularly sickening given that it’s a poster advertising a charity walk.

“This is the action of hatemongers intent on spreading bigotry and perpetuating sectarian divisions in our society.”

Ms. Mullan said that such behaviour stands in stark contrast to the work that Martin McGuinness did “to build reconciliation and reach out the hand of friendship to all communities”.

“It is also grossly insulting to the McGuinness family who still mourn the loss of their loved one,” she said, adding:

“I am calling on political unionism to show leadership by condemning this display of hate and demanding an end to such sickening and sectarian hate crimes.”