FERMANAGH and South Tyrone MP, Michelle Gildernew, has condemned the erection of an anti-GAA poster in Dungannon.
The poster depicts the GAA crest with the slogan ‘The Sporting Wing of the IRA’ and was erected in the Coolhill area of the town.
It has also been condemned by leading GAA officials, who have stressed the Association’s non-political and non-sectarian ethos.
Ms Gildernew said the erection of the poster was part of an ongoing campaign to intimidate the GAA ‘in Dungannon, Tyrone and across the north’ and would fail.
“Over the course of recent months, we have unfortunately witnessed an intensification of the campaign against the GAA from some sections of loyalism,” she said.
“The erection of this threatening and sectarian banner in Dungannon is the latest in a series of reprehensible attacks on the sport.
“The GAA is inclusive and open, it welcomes all sections of society to participate in its games.
“Within Tyrone the GAA is the bedrock of many communities. In particular, Thomas Clarke GAC and Eoghan Ruadh Hurling club are deply embedded in the local community of Dungannon.
“I am calling on leaders within the Unionist and Loyalist community to make immediate efforts to end this futile campaign.”
Leading Ulster GAA official, Stephen McGeehan, also condemned the banner. In a post on social media, said the GAA posed no risk to anyone.
“We are a sporting and community organisation that welcomes all. This poster is despicable and highlights ignorance of those promoting such hatred,” he added.
In a statement on social media, the so-called ‘Loyalist Moygashel/Dungannon facebook page said loyalists in the area had ‘had enough.’
“There are people who brand the GAA as ‘just a sport.’ It takes little research to uncover the GAA’s close links and promotion of the IRA and their murder campaign,” the post added.