Group with UDA links closer to government recognition

UDA mural in Carrickfergus
UDA mural in Carrickfergus

A group with UDA links is thought to be getting closer to having official government recognition.

Resolve, an East Belfast community restorative justice group, has been described as making a "useful contribution in a fragmented community", according to the Criminal Justice Inspection Northern Ireland.

The aim of the group is to offer non-violent solutions to problems within the community.

The UDA, along with the UVF and other loyalist and republican paramilitaries continue to carry out 'punishment' shootings and beatings across Northern Ireland on a regular basis.

The Resolve scheme is less than two years old and will now enter the second stage of CJINI's accreditation process.

Brendan McGuigan of CJINI said: "It's very significant in the sense that it is the first of the schemes to come forward with links from the UDA constituency.

"Community-based restorative justice schemes have been operating now for approximately 16 to 17 years, but have only been formally accredited over the last nine years.

"Some of them are from republican backgrounds, others are from loyalist backgrounds, but mainly the UVF constituency as opposed to the UDA."