Police pledge action on racial attacks

Published Tuesday, 06 May 2014
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Police and community representatives have held a meeting at Belfast City Hall to discuss the rise in hate crimes.

Police pledge action on racial attacks
Windows were broken in the latest attack. (© Pacemaker)

It comes following another racist attack in east Belfast where the home and car of a Polish family were damaged in the Templemore Avenue area of the city.

The incident happened shortly after 11.30pm on Monday and the living room window of the house was smashed while a car parked outside it was also damaged.

It was the latest in a series of racist incidents targeting Eastern Europeans in the area.

Representatives from the Polish Consul met senior PSNI officers on Tuesday afternoon to discuss the upsurge of attacks and what can be done to stop them.

Speaking afterwards, Assistant Chief Constable Will Kerr said a new a PSNI special unit - 'Operation Orion' - is working on tackling this issue, and called for support from the people of Belfast.

"What we had was a frank, constructive conversation that talked about the personal experiences of the victims of racist hate crimes across the city of Belfast and what we're going to do," he explained.

"The racist hate crimes across Belfast need to be tackled actively, with one voice for the city.

"There is no one single cause of racist hate crimes, there is a multitude of causes, and they need to be addressed that way."

Police are treating Monday night's incident the incident as a hate crime. Two people - a man aged in his 20s and a woman aged in her 40s - were in the house at the time.

They were not injured but were "left shocked by their ordeal". A PSNI spokesman says four men are believed to have been involved in the incident.

Detectives have appealed for anyone who witnessed the attack or anyone with any information to contact them at Musgrave Police Station on the non-emergency number 101.

© UTV News
Comments Comments
PB in Belfast wrote (267 days ago):
There appears to be a pattern with these on going attacks..now I'm no Einstein but you would think the police would be all over this!!!!
Danny in Belfast wrote (267 days ago):
Michael - I think he meant within his own community not the media. As in people claiming immigrants are get jobs/homes/benefits straight 'off the boat' (for lack of a better phrase) ahead of local causing informed and misplaced anger towards them. I believe they should look to their own representatives (DUP/UUP) who have traditionally never tried to improve the life of working class protestants and have simply point to Sinn Fein and said it's their fault.
Michael in Templepatrick wrote (268 days ago):
I watched that 'Debate' clip there below the headline. Jim Wilson claims that there is "misinformation" being sent out to the media etc. Anyone know what he's talking about?
Geographically correct in Western Europe but originally from Belfast wrote (269 days ago):
Poland is actually Central European, not Eastern.... But anyways thats not the point. Belfast needs to catch up with the rest of Europe and realise we can all live together no matter what nationality. It's a pity because it's only a small minority of absoloute eejits that are carrying out these attacks and it gives the whole of Belfast a bad name. Belfast was front page of the most read Spanish newspaper yesterday- word is spreading fast, say goodbye to tourism in Northern Ireland.
Joe B in Belfast wrote (269 days ago):
Where are the politicians here? Their silence is deafening. Why aren't they on prime time news stating that this is not acceptable? Heres why. Protectionism: they are both protecting their votes in forthcoming elections, and protecting the paramilitary groups in east Belfast, again to help boost their vote. The days of the UDA and associated groups was meant to have ended. Thuggery, under the guise and protection of the name of a paramilitary group is STILL THUGGERY. The response is little more than posturing from unionist parties in an effort to oust the Alliance party. These people need to be outed by those in the local community; however, these are no doubt the people who are supplying them with cheap cigarettes, alcohol and drugs. Will they do it? What do you think. Threat of violence is easily overcome using one of the many anonymous ways to informing the PSNI. The one thing that any people engaging in this behaviour is guidance from political leaders. This goes for both east AND west Belfast following the recent attack near the Whiterock. Best thing that could happen here: education, and the Alliance party.
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