Concern has been expressed by éirígí An Iúir in relation to a number of planned unionist marches due to take place in the centre of Newry.
Commenting on the proposed sectarian parades éirígí's Newry representative Stephen Murney said "At the end of the month, Newry will see an entire weekend of unwanted and unnecessary marches taking place. From any perspective, this is a completely disproportionate and needless imposition on this city and its people.
"This totally unwarranted display of unionist triumphalism begins on Friday 28th August with a band parade organised by the sectarian South Down Defenders Flute Band which plans to bring up to 50 bands to this event which will cause widespread disruption for several hours.”
Murney added "The following day [August 29] will see another sectarian parade involving 9 bands proceeding through the centre of Newry and then returning later that evening. On the afternoon of Sunday August 30th, another march will again take place in the centre of the town, and will again return via the same route a short time later.
"This will mean unnecessary widespread disruption to residents, motorists and shoppers on what should normally be a busy bank holiday weekend.
"Rather than local residents and visitors to Newry enjoying a relaxing bank holiday weekend they will instead be forced to endure major traffic disruption, sectarian music being played and a massive security operation enforced by the PSNI.
During previous marches residents have also had to endure unionist bandsmen drinking and urinating in public, while the PSNI stand idly by and do nothing.”
Stephen continued, "There can be no justification for this amount of marches taking place in Newry over the bank holiday weekend other than the various organisers seeking to engage in repeated coat-trailing exercises. The motivation of those seeking to impose these unwanted parades on the people of Newry repeatedly throughout the year certainly must be.
"It is our view that sectarian parades which cause unnecessary disruption and tension should be rerouted away from areas where their presence is not wanted.
The éirígí spokesperson concluded “Again we want to make it clear that sectarianism in all its forms has no place in today's society and as such these sectarian events should be opposed by all."