Speeches sourced from the Labour party’s online archive More…

Vernon Coaker MP, Labour's Shadow Northern Ireland Secretary, commenting on rioting in Belfast and other parts of Northern Ireland tonight, said:

"Public disorder and violence is unjustified and unacceptable. This criminal behaviour by a small number of people is an attack on the entire community.

"I commend and admire police officers on the frontline tonight. They are doing a very dangerous job with outstanding professionalism and courage.

"Despite the trouble we have seen today, I have seen some positive signs emerge. There are undoubtedly still deep-seated problems around some parades, but encouraging steps have been taken in places like Crumlin, which shows that solutions can be found through dialogue, mutual understanding and respect for everyone's rights."

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