The Bloody Sunday Trust has said it is "very concerned" at the display of support for the British Army's Parachute Regiment during Saturday's Apprentice Boys parade in Derry.
The PSNI have confirmed they are investigating the wearing of Parachute Regiment badges by one of the bands taking part.
Tony Doherty (pictured), chairperson of the Trust, whose father was shot dead by Soldier F, said: "The Trust was aware of rumours circulating over the past few weeks that the Apprentice Boys march would be used to demonstrate support for the Paras and Soldier F. It is very disappointing that indeed such displays were evident on Saturday and were paraded through the city.
"The Trust has been very concerned for some time that elements within the loyalist/unionist community seem set on demonstrating their support for Soldier F and Paras throughout the north. While this is both reprehensible and disturbing for many victims of the Parachute Regiment, it is callous and irresponsible in the extreme to parade such support through the streets of Derry.
"There could easily have been a major confrontation on Saturday as a result of this. This type of behaviour is already causing unnecessary tension and is having a negative impact on community relations.
"The Apprentice Boys must learn the lessons of the past. This type of behaviour is simply not acceptable. An explanation is required as a matter of urgency. The PSNI also need to explain why they did not prevent this provocative display.
|While the Trust has no intention of becoming involved in the marching issue, we will be seeking meetings with both the Apprentice Boys and PSNI to allow them to explain their actions and to provide commitments that this will not happen again.
"Finally, none of the actions on Saturday provide any excuse or reason for anyone to attack either church or other buildings on Derry’s Walls. This type of sectarianism is not acceptable at any level and the people involved should stop.’"
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