LONDON, April 10 – RIA Novosti, Denis Voroshilov. Several dozen people in the north of Belfast pelted the police with firecrackers, stones and bottles of gasoline, but the overall situation in the city remains calm, RIA Novosti reports.
Loyalists protested against Brexit on Friday announced that they would end the rally after eight days of mourning over the death of Prince Philip, and there were no gatherings or fights in areas where supporters of unity with Britain live. No one gathered at the gate of the fence separating the loyalist and nationalist areas. Earlier, it was at these gates that clashes between groups of young people took place, through which hooligans threw stones, firecrackers and garbage at each other. One evening, the radicals set fire to the gate, and also hijacked and set fire to a city bus.
On Friday, there was no one on the side of the loyalists, teenagers began to gather at the infamous gates on the side of the nationalists after 21.00 local time (23.00 Moscow time). One police car was parked there, and there were three officers of the city police. A group of 12-15 youngsters stood on the sidewalk opposite the alley leading to the gate for about half an hour, and then dispersed to local fast food eateries.
Shortly before that, in a neighboring area, unknown persons set fire to an urn, several police cars arrived at the scene, but immediately after the remains of the burnt urn were extinguished, the police left.
The fact that there were no significant clashes in the city was the result of the fact that early in the morning, public figures, clergy and leaders of various communities issued an appeal to abandon violence and not complicate the situation in an already troubled region. Later, by mid-afternoon, the Loyalists confirmed that they were abandoning the protests due to national mourning.
At about 21.45 in the area in the north of the city, a group of young people of several dozen people began to gather. According to eyewitnesses, there were about 20 of them, but police representatives on the spot could not confirm this information and name the exact number of participants.
Several dozen police officers in special vehicles and police with dogs arrived at the scene. Stones, rubbish, empty glass bottles and trash cans were thrown at the police. Someone threw a burning bottle of gasoline towards the police and set the bus stop on fire.
“Let them leave, let them disperse,” – were heard the commands of officers to subordinates.
The police did not use force, but began to push the hooligans back into the street and then into a nearby alley. In the alley, hooligans stole and set fire to a car, trying to direct it to the police formation. The car drove to the sidewalk, stopped and burned down. After that, the attackers dispersed throughout the area.
Local residents, who could not get home, waited for the end of the riots and talked to reporters.
“I wait until everything is over, and then I'll go home, I live over there, two blocks (behind the police cordon) … This happens, we are used to it. We have such a story, I saw all this in my childhood, I see it from time to time now , saw my parents, “a local resident, 63-year-old Peter, told RIA Novosti.
When asked if he was afraid of the actions of vandals and if they could damage his house, the agency's interlocutor laughed and said that he would be upset about the damage, but in Northern Ireland “people are used to different things.”
Peter, like many people on the streets, asked not to give his real name and not to photograph.
“We all know each other here,” he explained his refusal.
Half an hour later, on the other side of the street, literally 200 meters from the site of the previous incident, a crowd of teenagers aged 12-16 began to gather. There were about 35-40 of them, they behaved less aggressively, most of them sat on the sidewalk or talked in groups on the road. Some skated, some bicycles. But after about half an hour, several people started throwing small stones and debris into the police cars blocking the street. The police did not use force and did not react to their actions. Soon the teenagers calmed down, most of the group dispersed along the lanes, the rest threw several firecrackers and three bottles of gasoline at the police. Accents
The incident took place on a road bordering a network hypermarket car park. The first three parking rows in the parking lot were completely filled with cars, despite the fact that the store had been closed for a long time: local residents, mainly young people, gathered in groups of three or four people, settled in cars with food and watched what was happening, many filmed everything on smartphones. Some got out of their cars and approached the fence separating the parking lot from the road and talked with acquaintances who were on the street opposite the police.
In general, the end of the day in Belfast passed calmly, the center was empty, also due to a hard lockdown, which is still in effect in the region.
At the end of Friday, the police appealed to the population with a request not to arrange clashes both with the police and among themselves.
“We would like to call for calm and ask everyone who has any influence in their areas. Please use your influence to ensure that the younger generation does not fall into the hands of criminals, so that they are safe and caused harm this evening, “Northern Ireland Police Chief Muir Clark said in a statement.