'Fascism has no place in our community,' says MLA after Nazi flags hung outside Belfast mosque

Nazi flags, Dunmurry.
Nazi flags have been erected near a mosque in Belfast.

An MLA has condemned the flying of Nazi flags near a mosque in Belfast.

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The flags were erected on lampposts in Dunmurry near Belfast Iqraa Mosque in the Sunnymeade area.

The flags bear the Swastika and SS insignias.

They have since been removed and police are treating the incident as a racially motivated hate crime.

“This despicable and racially motivated action is clearly designed to intimidate members of a minority community,” People Before Profit MLA Gerry Carroll said.

“Fascism has no place in our community. I send full solidarity to the members of Iqraa Mosque and to all affected by this horrendous and racist act.

“The far-right is whipping up Islamophobia and fear about immigration to divide people and scapegoat migrants for the economic and social problems facing our society.

“We need to make a renewed effort to overcome racism, to defend migrants and refugees, and to uplift all communities together in the face of government neglect.”

The SDLP also condemned the flags.

“It’s absolutely disgraceful that these flags, a symbol of hate all over the world, have been erected outside a mosque in the Dunmurry area of west Belfast," SDLP West Belfast councillor Paul Doherty.

"I’d like to send my solidarity to all those who worship at the Iqraa Mosque and School and praise the local residents who have quickly spoken out against this and made it clear that the people who put up these flags do not speak for them.

Nazi flags placed outside mosque in Dunmurry.

“This is a welcoming area and a diverse community and any attempt to intimidate someone because of their faith must be condemned in the strongest possible terms.

"People of all backgrounds live together in this area with no issue and the actions of those who put up these flags cannot be allowed to harm community relations.

“It is truly staggering to see flags of this nature erected in west Belfast. This is an area that strongly rejects fascism and I cannot understand why anyone would target a place of worship in this way.

"I’d urge anyone with any information about these flags to come forward to police. These flags must be removed immediately and the people behind this held responsible for peddling hate in our community.”

Police said reports were made of a number of flags having been erected in the Ashley Park area of Dunmurry.

Chief Inspector Brannigan said: “Our enquiries are at an early stage, however at this time, we are treating this report as a racially motivated hate crime.

“We are appealing to anyone who may have any information which may assist us with our enquiries to call 101, and quote reference number 360 of 23/08/23.”

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