Readers like you keep news free for everyone.

More than 5,000 readers have already pitched in to keep free access to The Journal.

For the price of one cup of coffee each week you can help keep paywalls away.

Support us today
Not now
Tuesday 26 September 2023 Dublin: 16°C
Shutterstock/Alexandros Michailidis
# criminal damage
Belfast graffiti threatening Leo Varadkar investigated as hate crime
The graffiti was written on a wall in Belfast between last night and this morning.

GRAFFITI IN BELFAST that made threats against the Tánaiste is being investigated by police as a hate crime.

Belfast police are investigating graffiti that was written on a wall between Friday evening and Saturday morning at Drumart Square.

The graffiti contained threatening language against Leo Varadkar, including that he would “hang” if he “set foot in Ulster”.

In a statement to, the PSNI said that police in south Belfast received a report today of criminal damage at Drumart Square in Belvoir Estate.

“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 PSNI said.

“The matter is being treated as a hate crime by police.”

MP for South Belfast Claire Hanna said that she was contacted by residents who were “nauseated” by the message.

Tweet by @Claire Hanna Claire Hanna / Twitter Claire Hanna / Twitter / Twitter

“Words on walls and words from politicians have consequences – time for leadership and calm,” Hanna said.

The wall with the graffiti has been repainted this afternoon.

Speaking to, Fine Gael TD and chair of the Committee on the Implementation of the Good Friday Agreement Fergus O’Dowd said credence should not be given to the message. 

“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,” O’Dowd said. 

The PSNI has asked anyone with information to contact officers at Lisburn Road, to submit a report on its website, or to contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.