Friday, September 19, 2008

MP snubs Celtic invites because of sectarian singing

Published: 19/8/08

A FRESH sectarian singing row flared last night after the Ulster sports minister hinted he may snub an invite to Celtic Park in protest at IRA tunes sung by their fans.

Gregory Campbell, a DUP MP, has written to Hoops chairman and former Northern Ireland secretary John Reid condemning IRA chants from Celtic fans at Motherwell last week.

Mr Campbell was asked to be a guest at the home of the SPL champions after claiming he and his wife suffered sectarian abuse by fans on a ferry.

But, speaking in his role as East Londonderry MP, he said: “The recent songs about the IRA would suggest an awful lot more work needs to be done.

“It would call into question attendance at the ground.”

But he praised Celtic and Rangers for trying to tackle the problem of bigots at games.

A Celtic spokesman vowed to consider his letter and added: “We are pleased Mr Campbell recognises the great work which Celtic has carried out in tackling sectarianism.”
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