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Friday, July 2, 1999 Published at 08:46 GMT 09:46 UK


Army moves into Drumcree

Security operation begins at Drumcree

A major security operation has begun at Drumcree ahead of Sunday's banned Orange march along the Garvaghy Road in Portadown.

Since early on Friday morning, the army has been erecting miles of barbed wire fencing and ploughing fields in front of the church.

Security forces have also been trying to create a greater barrier between any protesters and the security forces by damming a stream, apparently with the intention of flooding the field.

The Search for Peace
The move has come amid fears of trouble surrounding the Parades Commission decision to prevent marchers from entering the mainly nationalist Garvaghy Road, on their way back from a service at Drumcree Parish Church.

Trouble has flared in the area in previous years, but the RUC Chief Constable is determined to try to thwart any violence this year.

He also wants to keep as much distance as possible between any protesters and the security forces.

It is believed people may also be prevented from camping out in the vicinity of the church.

Army vehicles and police landrovers have been at the site since dawn on Friday.

By the 4 July march, around 1,000 security force personnel will be deployed in the area.

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Portadown Orange Lodge

Garvaghy Road Residents' Coalition

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