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Loyalist slain in new feud

February 16, 2011

By Staff Reporter

The dispute between the Ulster Volunteer Force and the Loyalist Volunteer
Force, which may have been reignited by violence at a soccer match, has already claimed the life of a 34-year-old loyalist.
Brian Stewart, who was reported to have links to the LVF, was buried in Belfast on Monday. He was gunned down by the UVF a week earlier as he was driving to work in east Belfast.
Police feared further violence after the funeral. The killing was followed by bomb attacks that damaged homes in the city. There were no injuries, although the 70-year-old occupant of one home was treated for shock.
The UVF was blamed for the bombings. An attempted drive-by shooting may have also been linked to the feud.
There have also been reports of threats to senior UVF figures and members of their political wing, the Progressive Unionist Party.
The two loyalist groups have engaged in sporadic feuding since the LVF broke away from the UVF in 1996 over the latter group’s ceasefire. The LVF has opposed the Good Friday agreement and has continued sectarian attacks against Catholics, including murder.
The latest fighting began after a faction fight broke out in the stands of
Windsor Park, the North’s main soccer ground, during the Irish Cup Final on May 1.
On Monday, a 26-year-old man from Newtownards, Co. Down, appeared in court on weapons charges after being arrested by detectives investigating the murder of Stewart. Justin Horner was accused of holding a shotgun, a pistol and ammunition.
In April, both the UVF and LVF were cited by a new ceasefire watchdog for continuing to engage in violence and other criminal activity.
The Independent Monitoring Commission, which was set up jointly by the British and Irish governments to police the Good Friday agreement, indicated that the violence was continuing in spite of claims that the groups were on ceasefire.
PUP leader David Ervine lost about

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