Signs have been erected in the Bogside area of Derry depicting a policeman in a sniper's crosshairs.

Other signs were put up with the slogan 'IRA' and depicting other republican insignia.

DUP Foyle MLA Gary Middleton has condemned the signs saying that they would put Catholics off joining the police force and were both 'deeply offensive' and an 'incitement to hatred'.

Mr Middleton said: "A number of signs have appeared in the area, one of them depicts an PSNI officer with a target on his back.

"Many will see this as a sinister attempt to not only threaten the lives of PSNI officers but discourage people from traditionally Catholic backgrounds from joining the police.

"There are a number of other signs with IRA slogan. I have contacted and spoken with police who are investigating.

"It's deeply offensive to the local community who I have no doubt will distance themselves from the signs. They will be fearful of speaking out against them incase they become targets, but it's important people come together and condemn it.

"It's over to the PSNI and local community leaders to have the signs removed."

A PSNI spokesperson said: "We recognise that many people will find these signs offensive however the issue of signs, emblems and murals is one that can only be resolved by the community.

"The vast majority of people are supportive of police and want to present an image of this city that is inclusive and peaceful."

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