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'War's not over' - loyalist leader's chilling warning


Leading loyalist John White has sent out a message that will send a chill through supporters of the peace process – “the war’s not over.”

The UDP spokesman made his comments as he denied any talk of a split within his organisation.

Rumours have been rife that there is serious disharmony within the UDA and that one leading member had fled after death threats were made against him.

But Mr White totally denied any split saying that loyalism was more united than ever. But his warning that the war isn’t over is another blow to communities in North Belfast who have been torn apart by sectarian violence in recent months.

“I would dismiss any talk of a split as utter nonsense, loyalist anger at the amount of concessions to republicans has brought them closer than ever,” said the Shankill loyalist.

“The war is not over, loyalists are united against the enemies of unionism.”

And reacting to the death of 16-year-old Glen Branagh, who died when a pipe bomb he was throwing exploded in his hand, Mr White said:

“I am pleased to hear that the UDA are going to carry out an inquiry into the death of this young man.

“The circumstances surrounding his death are not clear, but I have given out warnings in the past asking young people not to allow themselves to get involved with this kind of behaviour.

“The cowboys who put these pipe bombs into the hands of our young people are members of fringe organisations who have nothing to do with the main groups.

Many of these so-called pipe bombs are nothing more than
improvised fireworks and extremely unstable, the consequences of that are now out in the open for all to see.”

The death of Glen Branagh, a member of the Ulster Young Militants – the youth wing of the UDA – has once again brought the activities of the terror group into question.

“What is happening in interface areas is a clear sign of loyalists’ growing despondency at the Good Friday Agreement,” said Mr White.

“Republicans seem to be making significant gains while unionists are being overlooked at every turn.

"However I would deny this has brought about any split in the UDA, I am certainly not aware of any split or or death treats against members. Loyalist are at this time more united than they have been for many years.”

November 16, 2001

This article appeared first on the web site on November 15, 2001.