Advertisement

We need your help now

Support from readers like you keeps The Journal open.

You are visiting us because we have something you value. Independent, unbiased news that tells the truth. Advertising revenue goes some way to support our mission, but this year it has not been enough.

If you've seen value in our reporting, please contribute what you can, so we can continue to produce accurate and meaningful journalism. For everyone who needs it.

Alan Shatter Laura Hutton/Photocall Ireland
Dáil

Alan Shatter refers to Derry as Londonderry during Dáil debate

The reference to the Northern Ireland city using a name traditionally used by unionists caused controversy on Twitter.

Updated 23.28

JUSTICE MINISTER ALAN Shatter caused a stir on Twitter earlier today when he referred to the city of Derry as Londonderry during a Dáil debate.

Discussing legislation to extend anti-terrorist powers under the Offences Against the State Act, Shatter listed a number of recent attacks on PSNI officers and other security personnel in the North when he made the reference to Londonderry.

The dispute over the city’s name has been a longstanding issue going back to the days of the Troubles. Traditionally, nationalists refer to it as Derry and unionists use Londonderry.

Shatter was outlining reasons why powers initiated in the wake of the Omagh bombings should continue to apply when he named one example of a recent attack: “Two pipe bombs set off in Londonderry on January 19, 2012.”

Later during the debate he explained his rationale behind the use of the name: “I would use either the term Derry or Londonderry interchangeably.

“It’s used by the two different communities in Northern Ireland; the Catholic community refers to Derry, the Protestant community refers to Londonderry. It’s a place that I want to see live in peace and I don’t have hang-ups about which name you attach to it.”

Legally, the city and county are called Londonderry while the local government district is called Derry. Road signs in the Republic of Ireland refer to the city as Derry while those in the North use Londonderry.

Reactions on Twitter varied from those who were outraged to those who reckoned Shatter had won the ‘West Brit of the Year award’:

Alan Shatter refers to Derry as Londonderry during Dáil debate
1 / 7
  • Derry Londonderry 1

  • Derry Londonderry 2

  • Derry Londonderry 3

  • Derry Londonderry 4

  • Derry Londonderry 5

  • Derry Londonderry 6

  • Derry Londonderry 7

Poll: Do you think Alan Shatter’s reference to Londonderry is a big deal or not?


Poll Results:

Yes (2083)
No (1891)
Don't know (489)

VIDEO: Alan Shatter has a laughing fit… in the Seanad

Readers like you are keeping these stories free for everyone...
A mix of advertising and supporting contributions helps keep paywalls away from valuable information like this article. Over 5,000 readers like you have already stepped up and support us with a monthly payment or a once-off donation.

Your Voice
Readers Comments
208
    Submit a report
    Please help us understand how this comment violates our community guidelines.
    Thank you for the feedback
    Your feedback has been sent to our team for review.