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Sinister threat Police probe graffiti warning Leo Varadkar he'd be killed if he sets 'foot in Ulster'

Northern Ireland's First Minister Arlene Foster condemned the graffiti saying violence has no place in democracy.

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Tánaiste Leo Varadkar. Photo: Julien Behal Photography

Tánaiste Leo Varadkar. Photo: Julien Behal Photography

Tánaiste Leo Varadkar. Photo: Julien Behal Photography

A sinister death threat painted on a wall in east Belfast which warned Tánaiste Leo Varadkar he’d be killed if he “set foot in Ulster” is been treated as “hate crime”.

The Police Service of Northern Ireland confirmed they were investigating the graffiti which was discovered on the side of a shop on Drumart Square in the Belvior estate overnight.

Northern Ireland's First Minister Arlene Foster condemned the graffiti saying violence has no place in democracy.

“Violence or the threat of violence has no place in democracy. I condemn those behind this. The Northern Ireland Protocol needs replaced but violence will not achieve it," Ms Foster said.

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SDLP MP Claire Hanna compared the threats which have since been painted over to statements used by the Klu Klux Klan.

“Actions like this will persist until we treat backward elements as the societal threats they are. Words on walls and words from politicians have consequences - time for leadership and calm”.

She said those who are intent on “relighting sectarian and racist fires” need to be tackled "swiftly and completely”.

A PSNI spokesperson said: "Police in south Belfast received a report of criminal damage at Drumart Square in Belvoir Estate on Saturday, January 30.

"It was reported that graffiti had been written on a wall in the area sometime between 6pm on Friday and 10am on Saturday morning. The matter is being treated as a hate crime by police.”

Fine Gael TD Fergus O’Dowd, Chair of the Committee on the Implementation of the Good Friday Agreement, said: “The language of hate and lynch mobs is not the language of the vast majority of the people of Northern Ireland and we should not give credence to the racist ranting of a few disturbed individuals."

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