Following on from yesterday’s overreaction by the PSNI, the United Kingdom’s paramilitary police force in the north-east of Ireland, to a technically illegal but entirely peaceful Easter Rising parade by members and supporters of Republican Sinn Féin, further video evidence has emerged of the confrontation in the Kilwilkie Estate, Lurgan, Co. Armagh. While a number of local residents suffered minor injuries during the dramatic intervention by officers in riot gear, seventy-six-year-old Lelia Quine required hospitalisation after being knocked to the ground. The pensioner is the sister of the late Gerry McKerr, one of the “Hooded Men”, a group of Irish political prisoners subjected to weeks of “special interrogation techniques” by the UK authorities at a secret military torture centre in 1971.
As the clips below indicate, in recent times the PSNI has begun to revert back to some of the more draconian and partisan policies of its hated predecessor, the disbanded Royal Ulster Constabulary. This represents a reversal in the equitable application of law enforcement which the contested region had begun to witness under the agreed reforms in policing, a condition of the Irish-British peace process of the early 2000s. However, this was a predictable outcome following Britain’s much criticised decision to end 50:50 cross-community recruitment in 2011. For some northern nationalist communities, the promise of peace has left them in a state not too dissimilar from that of war. And where the sense of occupation still hangs heavy in the air.
(Original video clips from YouTube User, Kilwilkie Lurgan)