In welcoming the ending of the Ardoyne parade stand-off, the Workers Party has commended the efforts of the two facilitators involved but has argued that the problem should never have arisen in the first place.
“With a resolution now agreed it is to be hoped that all parties involved in the creation of this situation take the opportunity in the coming weeks to reflect on the damage to community relations this impasse has caused, the tensions it has incited and the costs it has incurred.
They should reflect also on their own roles in all of that and how this matter could, and should, have been resolved years ago.
Solutions should derive from open dialogue. The ordinary citizens in our community should not be held to ransom by warring groups who turn the tap of sectarian hatred on and off to suit their own tribal motivations.
Welcome as this news is it further underlines the fact that this society must not be held to ransom by groups of people with confrontational agendas, limited vision and redundant attitudes.
People have a right to protest, people have a right to march and free association and, of course, all citizens have the right to respect.
Had everyone involved adopted that approach in 2013 everyone’s position could have been accommodated and we could have avoided the misery and disruption that was imposed on the community in the intervening years.”