Letter: Problems of policing Ulster

FINTAN O'TOOLE suggests that, if Northern Ireland is to become a neutral political space, its police force cannot carry the symbols of one part of the community alone ("Why the murder of this taxi driver may end Ireland's hopes of peace...", 29 August). The Royal Ulster Constabulary exists to enforce a legal code devised over the years by successive Westminster and Stormont administrations. As these bodies exist in a United Kingdom context, their police force is inherently a British and Unionist one, enforcing British rule in Northern Ireland. It is not possible to be neutral on the issue of Partition in Ireland: one either supports the continuation of the union in some form, or an Irish republic of some sort or some type of independence for the province. The police force must follow one of these models and cannot really be all things to all men. An "apartheid" police system, with one force for unionists and another for nationalists is an abdication of responsibility for everyone.


Newtownards, Co Down