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Threats against Donaldson have been reported to police – DUP

The DUP said threats against party leader Sir Jeffrey Donaldson have been reported to the PSNI (Liam McBurney/PA)
The DUP said threats against party leader Sir Jeffrey Donaldson have been reported to the PSNI (Liam McBurney/PA)

Threats made against DUP leader Sir Jeffrey Donaldson have been reported to the police in Northern Ireland, his party has confirmed.

A party spokesperson said they trusted those responsible “will be held accountable for their actions”.

Sir Jeffrey told the Commons earlier this week how he had been subjected to threats as he continues his negotiations with the UK Government over a deal on post-Brexit trading arrangements which could restore the powersharing institutions at Stormont.

The unionist party has maintained an almost two-year boycott of the Stormont institutions in protest at internal economic barriers between Great Britain and Northern Ireland, following the UK’s departure from the EU.

Amid speculation an agreement is near to being reached, the UK Government tabled new legislation on Wednesday aimed at providing a window for this to be achieved.

During an impassioned Westminster speech on the new legislation, the DUP leader referenced his time serving in the Ulster Defence Regiment (UDR) and attacked unionist critics of his attempts to reach a deal to restore Stormont.

He told the Commons: “And yet today, because of the stirring up that is going on, I was threatened – threatened – by those who never put on a uniform, by those who haven’t served our country.”

He added: “They are threatening people like me, who’s working day and night to try and find solutions and to move Northern Ireland forward on a basis that the vast majority of people can support.

“Well I would just say this to those who stir up, and those who threaten: the provisional IRA attacked me in the past and it didn’t deflect me from the task that I have, and my colleagues have, to do our job and to get the best that we can for Northern Ireland.”

Stormont
The Stormont powersharing institutions have been collapsed for almost two years (Liam McBurney/PA)

A DUP spokesperson said on Thursday: “The details have been reported to the PSNI (Police Service of Northern Ireland) and we trust those responsible will be held accountable for their actions.

“There is no place for the threat of violence in democratic politics.”

A PSNI spokesperson said: “We do not discuss the security of individuals and no inference should be drawn from this.”

In his speech Sir Jeffrey urged unionists to wait until a final deal is reached with the Government before they reach a verdict.