[Sinn Fein]

9 June 1998

Harassment of Deputy Mayor of Derry by British Army must cease

Sinn Fein Northern Chairperson Gearoid O hEára has described the British army's detention of Deputy Mayor of Derry Lynn Fleming as ``motivated by vindictiveness''. Councillor O hEára said:

``Whilst travelling to an official engagement the car in which Deputy Mayor Fleming was a passenger was stopped by British soldiers at a checkpoint in Browning Drive. The driver of the car informed the soldier of Councillor Fleming's identity as Deputy Mayor, their destination and the nature of their business and they were then told to proceed.

``On returning from the engagement the same British Army patrol stopped Councillor Fleming's car once more, again asking the names of the those travelling in the car. On telling the British soldier that they had already supplied this information the soldier then began to ask a number of other personal questions also taking note of thei mileage on the car.

``This incident was a blatant case of harassment agains the Deputy Mayor carrying out her duties on behalf of the citizens of Derry City. It would appear that the DUP are not the only people who will try to make life as awkward as possible for the Deputy Mayor but I would remind them that Councillor Fleming has no intention of being delfected from her commitment to represent all the people of this city.

``Sinn Fein will be demanding an end to this state harassment when our party leaders meet with the British Secretary of State, Mo Mowlam. Derry City Council should also make it clear that this attempted intimidation of the Deputy Mayor ceases immediately.''

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