Sinn Fein MP Mickey Brady has condemned the flying of an SAS flag at Loughgall as “insensitive”, saying it will only add further distress to the families of the nine IRA men who were killed there 31 years ago.
The flag has been erected on the anniversary of the 8th May 1987 incident when eight IRA men launched a large scale attack on the village police station but were killed by the SAS. Civilian Anthony Hughes was also killed.
Newry Armagh MP Mickey Brady said: “I’m appalled to learn that a British SAS flag has once again been reported flying in the village of Loughgall.
“This shameful act of glorification will only serve to add further distress to the families of the nine men executed and I am calling for the immediate removal of the two flags.”
Mid Ulster MP Francie Molloy added:
“The tragic events of Friday 8th May 1987 will be forever defined as one of the saddest periods for the Republican family in County Tyrone.
“This is a sinister and provocative development which Sinn Féin has reported to the PSNI.”
Mairead and Roisin Kelly of the of The Loughgall Truth & Justice Campaign said that two flags bearing the emblem of the SAS have been erected.
“This has become a yearly occurrence,” they said. “The families of the men are calling for the immediate removal of these flags as they are offensive, disrespectful and a mark of triumphalism. Someone needs to be held accountable for this action and charged with hate crime.
“This is a sustained campaign against the families of the nine men killed at Loughgall. No one should glorify or mock the deaths of anyone regardless of who that person was or what that person was doing at the time of their death. This causes stress and unnecessary grief to families who are already grieving the death of their loved ones.”