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Friday, 14 June, 2002, 02:22 GMT 03:22 UK
Move to defuse NI tension postponed
The mother-of-six was standing on her doorstep
The mother-of-six was standing on her doorstep
An initiative aimed at reducing tensions at interface areas of Belfast has been postponed as a result of fresh trouble in east Belfast.

A spokesman for the Loyalist Commission said a "major initiative" was discussed during a six hour meeting earlier on Thursday.

But he added: "Sadly it had to be postponed due to yet another republican orchestrated attack into a Protestant community.

"It is all the more sinister that this attack occurred within hours of a visit by Martin McGuinness to the Short Strand, where his words of peace were not reflected by his community's actions."

A blast bomb type device exploded in Madrid Street and a woman was taken to hospital with what is thought to be shrapnel wounds.

The mother-of-six was standing on her doorstep when the incident happened.

Army bomb experts examined a further unexploded device in Madrid Street.

Police fired a number of plastic baton rounds.

Community activist

A police officer was injured after being struck with a stone.

A number of people were taken to hospital after stonethrowing in the Mountpottinger area.

Joe O'Donnell, the Sinn Fein councillor for the area, said the injuries happened when nationalists were attacked as they held a protest in Short Strand.

But Frankie Gallagher, an east Belfast community activist and worker, said loyalists came under attack from nationalists.

Loyalists had been considering a "no first strike" policy in flashpoint areas of Belfast.

This would have meant they would not initiate any violence.

The recent violence in north, south and east Belfast has led to fears that the situation will get worse rather than better during the summer.

But efforts have been made to ease the tension.
Firefighter
There has been violence across Belfast

The Loyalist Commission was set up to give political analysis to the paramilitary groups. It followed the dissolution of the Ulster Democratic Party, which was linked to the Ulster Defence Association.

Ulster Unionists, church leaders and representatives of the UDA and the Ulster Volunteer Force are among those who sit on the commission.

The police believe recent loyalist and republican violence was orchestrated.

 WATCH/LISTEN
 ON THIS STORY
BBC NI's Conor Macauley:
"Between six and eight plastic bullets were fired"
BBC NI's Mark Simpson:
"Securing a deal is one thing, making it stick will be even harder"
See also:

10 Jun 02 | N Ireland
10 Jun 02 | N Ireland
10 Jun 02 | N Ireland
08 Jun 02 | N Ireland
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