(MENAFN) Northern Ireland police have initiated a hate crime investigation after discovering graffiti with the phrase "Irish lives matter" on a wall in Belfast. The authorities believe the message may convey anti-immigrant sentiment, echoing similar incidents in the region. The vandalism, confirmed by local authorities in west Belfast, is being treated as a hate incident, with police inspector Andrew Matson stating that the graffiti, along with other anti-immigrant signage, will be investigated.
The local Neighborhood Policing Team is conducting inquiries, urging anyone with information about the placement of the graffiti to come forward. Another sign, located elsewhere in Belfast, declared that "illegal immigrants" would no longer be accepted for housing, further raising concerns about the prevalence of anti-immigrant sentiments in the area.
Various lawmakers have condemned the graffiti and signs, with Sinn Fein MP Paul Maskey describing them as "offensive" and "disgraceful." Maskey emphasized the need to address such behavior and stated that there is no place for it in society. Social Democratic and Labor Party councilor Paul Doherty called for the removal of the graffiti, asserting that Belfast is a "welcoming area" home to a diverse population. People Before Profit MLA Gerry Carroll labeled the signs as "racist poison."
The appearance of such messages in Belfast has sparked widespread condemnation, highlighting the importance of addressing issues related to racism and discrimination in the community. As the investigation unfolds, it underscores the broader societal challenge of combating hate crimes and fostering an inclusive environment that embraces diversity.
MENAFN provides the information “as is” without warranty of any kind. We do not accept any responsibility or liability for the accuracy, content, images, videos, licenses, completeness, legality, or reliability of the information contained in this article. If you have any complaints or copyright issues related to this article, kindly contact the provider above.