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Irish republican marches to go ahead after Glasgow riot

Following police advice, the council has decided not to overturn the previously awarded permits.

Riot: Protesters clashed with an Irish unity march.
Riot: Protesters clashed with an Irish unity march. Shelby May

Two Irish republican parades in Glasgow will go ahead as planned despite rioting during a march last week.

Following police advice, the city council has decided not to overturn the previously awarded permits for Saturday's marches.

The council's decision follows violent scenes in the city on Friday night.

A full-scale riot broke out in the Elder Park area of Govan after an Irish unity march - led by the James Connolly Republican Flute Band - was met by hundreds of "disruptive" counter-demonstrators.

Riot police, mounted officers, a force helicopter and dog units were used to quell "significant disorder".

Two men - aged 37 and 21 - were arrested and charged with public disorder following the incident.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon called for an end to the "violent and sectarian disruption", while Glasgow City Council vowed to crack down on the "morons intent on bringing mayhem to the streets of our city".

Following "extensive discussions" with senior officers from Police Scotland, the council's chief executive has decided not to call another processions committee.

The two marches - led by the Friends of the Irish Republican Prisoners Welfare Association and the Calton Republicans Group - will go ahead as planned.

However, the decision is "not final and could change in response to a change in circumstances".

https://stv.tv/news/west-central/1440402-glasgow-marches-violent-and-sectarian-disruption-must-stop/ | default

Annemarie O'Donnell, the chief executive of Glasgow City Council, said: "The scenes we saw in Govan on Friday were a disgrace and they must not be repeated.

"However the options open to Glasgow City Council and Police Scotland are limited, both by the law - people's right to march and protest - and by circumstance.

"At this time, I am satisfied that severely restricting or prohibiting Saturday's processions would not reduce the likelihood of further trouble and might place additional burdens on Police Scotland as they manage an already difficult situation.

"I understand that people may not agree with this decision, but after my discussions with the police I am convinced this presents the best chance of keeping people safe.

"Ultimately the responsibility for ensuring that Saturday's marches are safe lies with the organisers and the protesters.

"They must commit themselves to behave in a way which will not further stretch the patience of their fellow Glaswegians."

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