Belfast City Council working with PSNI after UDA 'paramilitary show of strength' at Roselawn

Belfast City Council has said it is working with police after reports of a paramilitary show of strength at its Roselawn Crematorium.

The Belfast Telegraph reports of men dressed in paramilitary uniform attending the funeral of UDA man Andrew Best on April 23.

It reports of three masked men in paramilitary uniform, wearing dark glasses and gloves, and standing beside the coffin inside Roselawn.

Alliance Councillor Michael Long called for an immediate investigation.

“These are shocking images, particularly at a Council-run crematorium,” said the party leader on the council. “This is a place where families and loved ones come together to grieve and pay tribute to those who have passed away. In 2024, we should not be seeing paramilitaries on our streets, never mind at Roselawn or other similar locations. “It is clear an urgent investigation is needed by Belfast City Council – both to find how this was allowed to happen and also why it was not reported at the time. Once the circumstances are established, any further actions may come at that stage. “Alliance will be raising this with council officers and we expect a full explanation to be provided.”

A Belfast City Council statement said: “Belfast City Council is undertaking an investigation into the circumstances around a cremation service at Roselawn Crematorium on Tuesday 23 April and is liaising with the PSNI.

“A report will be brought back to elected members in due course. It would be inappropriate to comment further while this investigation is ongoing.”

In an updated statement, it said councillors had met and condemned the incident. The council said a full report would be carried out.

Police added: "We are aware of media commentary and images depicting what appear to be masked men at a funeral, which is believed to have taken place in Belfast on 23 April. An investigation into the images will now take place."

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