Northern Ireland

Stormont assembly is recalled over Ardoyne parade ruling

The Northern Ireland assembly has been recalled to debate the Parades Commission ruling on a controversial Orange march in Ardoyne, north Belfast.

The recall request was made by the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP).

The parade is due to pass a sectarian flashpoint, which has been the scene of serious riots in recent years.

The DUP has described the decision as rewarding riotous behaviour by dissident republicans. The debate has been arranged for Tuesday 16 July.

The party had submitted a request to the Speaker of the assembly, to schedule the special sitting "at the earliest opportunity available".

The DUP motion for the proposed debate says: "Attempts to build a shared future have been harmed by the action of those who oppose the concept of sharing space and respecting cultural identity."

It calls for respect for the rule of law and for "tolerance to be shown for everyone's cultural identity".

A spokeswoman for the assembly said: "There will be an additional plenary sitting of the Northern Ireland assembly on Tuesday, 16 July 2013 after the Speaker received a valid request to recall the assembly.

"Plenary will begin at 12 noon and will discuss a motion in respect of the impact of a determination issued by the Parades Commission on 9 July on building a shared future."

The Parades Commission published its determination, restricting the north Belfast parade, on Tuesday evening.

It ruled that the Orange Order can march past Ardoyne shops on the Crumlin Road on the morning of 12 July but cannot use the same return route on Friday afternoon.

In recent years, there has been serious rioting in the area after the return leg of the parade.

The ruling was welcomed by nationalist politicians but has angered unionists.

The Grand Orange Lodge of Ireland called the decision "ludicrous" and damaging to community relations, but Sinn Féin called it a sensible decision.

The assembly was last recalled on Monday 8 July to discuss allegations of political interference in the running of the Northern Ireland Housing Executive.