Bid to ‘revoke’ Gaza twinning 26Mar12 March 26, 2012

Ballymoney and Moyle Times  -  22 March 2012

MOYLE Ulster Unionist councillor Joan Baird is due to call for Moyle Council to ‘revoke and totally disassociate” itself from a proposed ‘Twinning Arrangement’ with Gaza.

She said the original decision was supported by a narrow majority of councillors on March 12 when seven councillors – all nationalists – backed the twinning and six councillors – all Unionists along with Independent councillor Randal McDonnell – voted against.

There are 15 councillors on the Council and one Ulster Unionist councillor and one SDLP councillor were absent on March 12. The other SDLP councillor present on March 12 voted for the Gaza twinning.

Supporters of the ‘twinning’ say it will bring humanitarian aid to the area and they deny it is a political move but opponents believe the move does make a political statement in an area which has parallels with the Northern Ireland situation.

Cllr Baird is due to raise the matter at a meeting of Moyle Council next Monday night (March 26).

She said: “This (original) resolution came in a week when there was an escalation of deadly violence and terror in the Palestinian-Israel conflict. We should not take sides or lend support to one party in what is essentially a war zone.

“Any tangible help must be channelled through the International Aid Agencies who are experts in this field. The proposed ‘Twinning’ will not promote good relations in our community in Moyle. We should now revoke the decision taken on 12 March 2012 without delay,” said Cllr Baird.

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