Republican women group’s flag fuels tensions in Cookstown

Republican flag in Cookstown
Republican flag in Cookstown

Concerns over sectarian tensions in Cookstown have risen further after a republican flag was erected in front of the court house in the town.

The blue flag of the ‘Cumann na mBan’ known as the women’s wing of the armed republican movement is believed to have appeared on the prominent location on Chapel Street last week.

In 2015, the Home Office listed Cumann na mBan as a group linked to Northern Ireland related terrorism.

Cumann na mBan which played a major role in the Easter Rising, has continued to exist in the following years, and in the mid 1980’s split from Sinn Fein, and aligned itself with Republican Sinn Féin and the Continuity IRA.

“A number of people have contacted me about this flag and there are real concerns and I would have concerns myself about the motives,” said UUP councillor Trevor Wilson.

“I think that this has been put up in the town and in the location it was placed can only be seen as an act of provocation and an effort to stir up tensions.

He added: “I would ask anyone who has any influence, to try and do something to get this flag down.”

Last week the Mail reported on placards in Monrush, which stated that ‘100 years of Republican murder and ethnic cleansing, and we are still British’.