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Taxi bricked in Northern Ireland rioting which has so far injured 41 police officers

Image credit: Geoffrey Moffett (Unsplash)

Nine officers have been injured during disorder across Northern Ireland last night, bringing the total number of police officers injured during recent violence to 41.

Monday’s disorder occurred in Newtownabbey, Carrickfergus and Ballymena, and started shortly after 6pm. There was also disorder in Derry/Londonderry.

During the disorder in these areas, petrol bombs and masonry were thrown at officers as they worked to restore order in the areas.

The nine officers were injured during disorder in Ballymena after Tactical Support Group officers were attacked after police attempted to engage with those present at an un-notified procession in the town, in the Crebilly Road area, at around 9.35pm. The officers are expected to be able to return to duty today.

During the night, as a result of the disorder in Ballymena, a stretch of the M2 was closed to allow debris to be cleared from the carriageway, including a wheelie bin, that had been thrown onto the motorway.

In relation to the disorder in Carrickfergus, an 18-year-old man was arrested last night on suspicion of possessing articles for use with petrol bombs, and he remains in custody assisting with enquiries.

In Derry/Londonderry it was also reported two vehicles were set on fire in the Nelson Drive area of the Waterside where it was reported a number of youths had gathered, and bins were set on fire on the road. Police also received a report about a brick being thrown at a taxi, which was carrying a passenger at the time, on Limavady Road at around 11.30pm.

Luckily neither the driver or passenger were injured. There were also reports of bins being set on fire in the area.

North Area Commander, Chief Superintendent Davy Beck, said: "The disorder we witnessed last night, and which our officers had to deal with, is extremely disappointing. Yet again we have seen people make a deliberate decision to damage our communities and target our officers. Not only did their reckless and criminal behaviour place the lives of our officers in danger, but such senseless behaviour shows the blatant disregard those responsible have for the safety of others by throwing debris onto a motorway. It is extremely fortunate no one was seriously injured, or worse.

"As your Police Service we are here to protect life and property and to keep people safe, and we will continue to do that. However, I am calling on all those who have influence to do what you can to bring an end to this violence as no one wants a repeat of these disgraceful scenes."

Derry & Strabane District Commander Darrin Jones, said: "Last night, we saw further disorder in our city during which our officers came under attack again. Again, we saw disgraceful scenes during which cars were set on fire and property damaged.

"This is reckless and criminal behaviour, and it has to stop. It is absolutely appalling and achieves nothing except harm to our community.

"I will continue to appeal to those in our community with influence to do what they can to stop this senseless behaviour. I would also appeal directly to parents and guardians to know where their children are and what they are doing to ensure they do not get caught up in criminality and that they are kept safe and away from harm.

“I would appeal to everyone in the area to help diffuse any local tensions and prevent any further disorder.”


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