DUP councillor's home attacked

Published Sunday, 09 December 2012
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Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness has condemned those responsible for the attack on the home of a DUP councillor in Ballygawley, Co Tyrone.

DUP councillor's home attacked
The front door of Councillor Samuel Brush's home has been smashed. (© DUP)

Samuel Brush, who sits on Dungannon and South Tyrone Borough Council, was asleep when the glass in his front door was smashed at around 5am on Sunday.

Councillor Brush said his home and car have previously been attacked.

"I've lost count of the number of times I've been targeted," he told UTV. "It's open season on elected representatives at the moment."

The councillor described those who attacked his home while he and his wife were sleeping as "sectarian thugs".

"They came under the cover of darkness. They don't want to be identified doing it. They're cowardly, they don't want to be seen doing it by anyone who would report it," he added.

Cllr Brush, a former UDR soldier, was shot and seriously wounded near Aughnacloy in Co Tyrone while working as a postman more than 30 years ago.

He said: "Since the time I was shot in 1981 I've never had peace since that."

In the past week, the homes and offices of Alliance councillors and MLAs have also been attacked, after a motion put forward by the party was passed to restrict the flying of the Union flag over Belfast City Hall.

A number of death threats have also been issued against elected representatives.

Mr McGuinness said: "All of this needs to be condemned in the strongest possible terms.

"Like the previous attacks on elected representatives this attack is equally unacceptable and must be totally condemned.

"It is important that those of us in political leadership stand united in the face of these sorts of attacks."

All politicians must show unity in their opposition to the recent attacks against my Alliance Party colleagues and now DUP Cllr Sammy Brush.

David Ford

Alliance leader David Ford said these attacks were an attack on democracy.

"There can never be any attempt to offer reason for these attacks nor to justify the causes behind it," Mr Ford said.

"I would like to assure Sammy that he is in the thoughts of the Alliance Party and we would like to offer him our full support."

Meanwhile, DUP MLA Lord Morrow believes the attack is linked to a Dungannon Council motion to release Gerry McGeough, who was jailed for the attempted murder of Cllr Brush.

McGeough, a former IRA gunrunner, was jailed for 20 years for the shooting and is due to be released from prison early next year.

"This attack is no coincidence. It is the latest in a prolonged campaign of vindictiveness targeted against a man who fought back," the Fermanagh & South Tyrone MLA said.

"To date, no-one has ever been convicted of attacking Cllr Brush's home and property.

"There are those in the community know who is behind this orchestrated campaign of sectarianism and it's time they spoke out. Staying silent is to condone these actions," added Lord Morrow.

First Minister Peter Robinson took to Twitter to condemn the incident.

"He was shot and hospitalised and his home has been attacked several times before," the DUP leader wrote.

Police are treating the latest incident as criminal damage.

© UTV News
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12 Comments
Conor in Belfast wrote (660 days ago):
Danny in Ulster, did you even bother to read the story??? Martin McGuinness clearly condemns the attack. I, also as a nationalist, condemn the attack.
martin in belfast wrote (660 days ago):
@bob in belfast. Try reading the article, both SF and Alliance have condemned this attack.
concerned in Belfast wrote (661 days ago):
I think the PSNI should treat this as a sectarian attack/hate crime - not just criminal damage.
John in Co.armagh wrote (661 days ago):
Funny how when a unionist property is attcked it is put down to criminal damage by the PSNI, but when a nationalist property is attacked they deem it sectarian, talk about double standards, nom his not content with trying to murder this man some years ago they are now trying to intimidate him from his home, come on now were is the party of comprimise as they call they themselves not up in arms over this.
Jessica in Antrim wrote (661 days ago):
Republicans would have been better off not retaliating
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BRIAN ROWAN
Two comments, spoken tongue-in-cheek, nonetheless summed up the mood and the mire that is Stormont politics.
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