SNP councillors behind Irish flag vote

The national flag of the Republic of Ireland will not be flown above a Scots local authority building, council leaders have confirmed

The national flag of the Republic of Ireland will not be flown above a Scots local authority building, council leaders have confirmed

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SNP councillors were behind the controversial vote to fly the Irish flag over civic buildings in North Lanarkshire.

The council’s corporate services committee backed a request from an Irish republican organisation based in Scotland to mark the 100th anniversary of the Easter Rising.

The committee recommended by eight votes to six that the Irish flag should fly over Motherwell Civic Centre and other council buildings in Cumbernauld and Coatbridge on April 24.

The issue still has to go to the full council meeting next month for approval.

Six SNP councillors voted in favour of flying the flag after discussing the issue beforehand.

However, Councillor David Stocks, the council’s SNP group leader, said the matter will be up for debate again at a group meeting on Monday.

Councillor Stocks admitted he had been “overhwelmed” with complaints from the public about the committee vote.

Two Labour councillors also voted in favour.

The vote has dismayed many Labour councillors who are determined to use the party’s majority to reverse it at the full council. Committee convener William Hogg and his deputy, Alan Clinch - both Labour councillors - were unable to attend yesterday’s meeting.

The events of April 1916 were significant in the campaign for Irish independence from British rule. Fifteen men said to be leaders of the uprising were executed in Dublin.

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