Page last updated at 07:24 GMT, Friday, 19 June 2009 08:24 UK

Protest organiser in fire threat

Paddy Meehan
Paddy Meehan said that a threat had been made against him

A man who helped organise an anti-racism rally against recent attacks in south Belfast has been threatened.

Paddy Meehan organised the protest after homes were attacked. More than 100 Romanians fled their homes.

Mr Meehan said police told him about the threat to firebomb his home on Thursday.

"I think this is a cowardly attempt by these people to try and intimidate anyone who stands up to them," he said.

"We have to make sure that they do not win again in forcing a person out of the area."

Police have said they do not comment on individual cases.

The Romanian ambassador to the UK, Dr Ion Jinga, is to meet the head of Northern Ireland's police over the attacks on his countrymen later on Friday.

He met First Minister Peter Robinson and deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness at Stormont on Thursday.


As well as meeting Chief Constable Sir Hugh Orde he will also meet Lord Mayor of Belfast Naomi Long.

He said he was shocked by the attacks over the last week which have seen Romanian families targeted in the south and east of Belfast.

"I have been encouraged by the reaction of public opinion here because every reaction I have seen in the media at least was in objection to what happened two days ago," he said.

"I come to my first visit to Belfast in an unfortunate and unhappy context. It is a place where we could build up projects on economic grounds, cultural exchanges, social co-operation - there are so many things that can be done together."

More than 100 Romanian people had to leave their homes in south Belfast on Tuesday and were housed overnight in a church hall before being moved to temporary accommodation.

On Wednesday night a Romanian family was attacked in east Belfast when a window was smashed in their home on the Upper Newtownards Road.

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