Page last updated at 11:14 GMT, Tuesday, 28 April 2009 12:14 UK

Council worker threats condemned


Intimidation of Belfast council staff has been condemned by politicians and trade unions.

It follows reports of both Catholic and Protestant employees being threatened at an amenity site in the Shankill area.

Belfast City Council joined with trade unions to issue a statement condemning the intimidation.

Lord Mayor Tom Hartley and Deputy Lord Mayor David Browne said safety of council staff "was a priority".

"The council and its trade unions reject the scourge of sectarianism and reaffirm opposition to all intimidation of whatever nature," they said.

Belfast City Council trade union co-ordinators Jim Parker and Tim Smith said every employee "has the right to go about their business and provide services to the people who live and visit Belfast, free from intimidation".

"Council employees are working hard to earn a living and deliver services which are vital to local communities and which are in greater demand in a period of recession," they said.

It is understood threats were made by people claiming to represent both dissident republican and loyalist paramilitaries.

In a statement, police said they were investigating two recent incidents.

They believe these are linked to issues within the depot and will be meeting with local council and political representatives on Wednesday to discuss these issues.

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