Day 351

16 Dec

Peace Rally, Belfast City Hall.

A recent change to the flag flying policy at City Hall in Belfast has resulted in a series of disruptive and violent incidents throughout the city. The City Council voted to fly the Union flag only at designated times throughout the year, and this democratic decision has provoked a hostile reaction from a small faction of the loyalist community. While there have been many peaceful and legal protests against this decision, these have been severely hampered by a number of violent incidents, riots, death threats and the attempted murder of a policewoman. There was a peace rally outside City Hall today – with the full support of the PSNI – to show the world once and for all that the majority of people in Northern Ireland do NOT condone these violent protests. We are not about two communities at war, and believe Northern Ireland today should be about equality and the celebration of the many people of differing nationalities, religions, colours and creeds who call this place home. The rally was NOT about a flag, it was about peace and freedom.

There was a two minute NO SILENCE and people were invited to bring all manner of noise making apparatus; drums, horns, loud hailers, hands, feet and vocal cords were on full display. The peaceful silent majority made sure they were heard.

I went along with my friend Emma, who also took photos.

We gathered. We stood. We made noise. We dispersed.

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These guys weren’t part of the rally, but they’re often around the city centre. They’re also pretty amazing, hence their inclusion in today’s batch of photos.

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5 Responses to “Day 351”

  1. sawfay December 16, 2012 at 3:09 pm #

    Dude!! These photos are really good! Dude!! 🙂

    You’re fairly getting the hang of this owl photography lark.

  2. James Gracey December 16, 2012 at 6:37 pm #

    Aww, thanks Martin! It’s only taken me the guts of a year, like! I hope you’re well. 🙂

  3. brothertom December 17, 2012 at 7:25 pm #

    My wife and I wish your city peace, and we will be making a return visit just after the New Year.

    • James Gracey December 17, 2012 at 10:00 pm #

      Thanks Tom! Hope you and your wife have a safe and pleasant stay while you’re here. :o)

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Day 351 « The Shooting Spree - December 16, 2012

    […] this video this morning at The Peace Gathering at Belfast City Hall. I went along with my friend James and joined hundreds of other people who felt it was time that the voice of the silent majority in […]

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