Belfast, the capital of Northern Ireland, has been a week-long protest. On the evening of the 9th local time, due to the death of the Queen’s husband Prince Philip, the protesters cancelled the scheduled protest, and Belfast, the capital of Northern Ireland, had a relatively calm night.
General Station reporter Tian Xiaochun: The violent conflict in Belfast took place in the surrounding area marked by the gate behind me. This gate is the main facility set up by the police to separate pro-British Protestant residents from pro-Irish Catholic residents. It is the front line of direct conflict between the two sides.
The gate was open for people during the day, but just at 5:30 p.m., when we got here, the gate had been closed by the police. It was at this gate that violent attackers burned down vehicles on Wednesday night. On the other side of the gate behind me is the pro-British Protestant community, where there was a gasoline bottle attack on a bus. On this side of my location is a Catholic community.
Protesters were scheduled to hold another large-scale protest on the evening of the 9th, but just as the police were worried about the resumption of violence, the protesters decided to cancel the protest on that day because the death of the Queen’s husband, Prince Philip, to express their condolences.
Local residents: Now people are facing various setbacks, not only in our Catholic community, but also on the other side of the isolation belt. Their Protestant community is facing difficulties, stemming from poverty, lack of investment, lack of job opportunities, lack of education.
People on our side have such problems, and on the other side of the isolation belt. Facing the same problem. So violence occurs here and on the other side of the isolation zone, which is caused by the lack of development opportunities for people in these communities for decades.
Green MP Brian Smith: I think Northern Ireland has been used as pawn by the British government and the European Union. These protesting young people have little hope for the future of Northern Ireland.
They have little chances. Their education level is poor. Their lives are already subject to environmental and structural inequality. Great impact.
Although all the major political parties in Northern Ireland have been calling for an immediate and complete end to violence for several days, they disagree on the causes of violence.
Local media reported that the decision of local agencies on the 2nd not to prosecute Sinn Féin people who participated in large-scale funerals in violation of epidemic prevention and control regulations last year caused dissatisfaction. Protesters believe that the government has failed in epidemic prevention and control and applied “double standards” in law enforcement.
In addition, after Brexit, people in Northern Ireland were angry about the embarrassing and chaotic situation there, and more and more people were dissatisfied with the British government.
For the past week or so, protests have been held in many towns, including Belfast, Carrick Fergus, and more, and there have been multiple clashes between police and protesters.