They were beating so loudly in Newtownards, County Down, you could almost hear them in Downing Street.
Loyalists take to the streets of Northern Ireland almost every week to demand that Boris Johnson remove the border from the Irish Sea.
Jamie Bryson organized this rally. A loyalist close to the thinking of certain paramilitaries, he says the government has a choice to make.
Mr Bryson said: “It is written on the banner peace or the protocol, it’s your choice. They can listen or they cannot listen.
“But if they want to have peace and stability in Northern Ireland, then they are going to have to change the partition of the UK.”
Asked about the danger of taking people to the streets, he said it was more dangerous to divide the UK.
“If unionism can’t stand up now and take to the streets now, then what else are they doing?” He asked.
The UK and the EU have agreed to put in place the Northern Ireland Protocol to avoid the introduction of a hard border between Ireland and Northern Ireland after Brexit.
Speaking at Friday’s rally, speakers like Baroness Hoey said the protocol threatened the Good Friday deal rather than protecting it.
The maritime border has left this community isolated from the rest of the UK, its British identity threatened.
Heather Ramsay, who attended the protest, said: “We have to get rid of the protocol. The protocol has to go. It dilutes our unionism with Britain.
“We feel very lonely, we feel like we’ve been abandoned, we feel like no one wants us to be part of them.”
Loyalists see the maritime border as an appeasement – the EU’s response to threats of Republican violence in the event of a border on …
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This notice was published: 2021-06-19 02:04:00