Second MP receives death threat
Published 11/12/2012 | 20:39
A second Northern Ireland MP has received a death threat.
Jeffrey Donaldson, DUP member for Lagan Valley, was informed of the danger to him and his family by police.
A DUP minister in Northern Ireland's power-sharing government at Stormont has also been threatened, it has been revealed.
Mr Donaldson said: "Police this morning received a serious threat to the effect that myself, my wife and children and my colleague Edwin Poots, his wife and children would be shot and the police are treating this threat very seriously."
Mr Poots is the health minister at Stormont and also MLA for Lagan Valley for the DUP.
East Belfast MP Naomi Long has also been targeted after her cross-community Alliance Party cast the crucial vote allowing Belfast City Council to reduce the number of days the Union flag flies from the city hall.
Mr Donaldson was elected to the Commons in 1997. He said he was appalled by the latest development.
"Whatever they may think of my politics as a unionist and someone who is proud to be British, it is beyond belief that people would target my wife and children in this way," he said. "I won't be intimidated by these threats, just as I have not been intimidated by such threats in the past, but this is the first time my family has been threatened in this way."
He said he not only condemned threats against himself and Mr Poots but had consistently condemned those against other democratic politicians. Mr Poots blamed dissident republicans angry at his stance that the flag should be flying. "It is not something that is new to them but it is something we will resist," he said.
Sinn Fein Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness said all threats against democratically elected representatives should be withdrawn immediately. "There is no justification for this type of intimidation from any grouping or organisation," he said.