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Last Updated: Monday, 4 April, 2005, 05:43 GMT 06:43 UK
Initiative to tackle flags issue
Initiative wants all paramilitary flags removed
Initiative wants all paramilitary flags removed
The contentious issue of flags flying in public areas is to be tackled by a partnership launched in Belfast.

The police, Housing Executive and government bodies have signed a protocol to set out aims, exchange information and measure success.

The aim is to work with communities to remove flags from main routes and town centres and get rid of all displays of paramilitary flags.

The protocol wants areas such as interfaces and schools kept clear.

Assistant Chief Constables Duncan McCausland and Peter Sheridan said the display of flags to mark out geographical areas or to promote sectarianism or intimidation was wholly unacceptable.

"Community support for this initiative has been very positive and as a result we have seen a reduction in the number of flags flown but the police cannot do this alone," they said.

"We are particularly pleased to see this process formalised through a partnership approach which will ensure that all agencies with a responsibility in this area can play their part."

Security Minister Ian Pearson also welcomed the initiative.

"This protocol signifies that the PSNI, government and agencies are committed to acting in accord to eliminate once and for all this scourge on society," Mr Pearson said.

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17 Oct 04 |  Northern Ireland
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