Loyalists in crisis

It looks like the murky waters of Loyalist paramiltary organisations are beginning to move quickly.

Fears are increasing of a new feud within loyalism, this time between the splinter organisation the LVF and the UDA. The expulsion of Johnny Adair, the leader of the West Belfast UDA, has led to:

“A number of senior loyalists immediately left their homes for secret locations, believing that the move would inevitably lead to serious conflict on the streets of Belfast and elsewhere. The development was seen as the formal declaration of another deadly loyalist feud of the kind that has claimed many lives in recent years.”

One senior paramilitary figure has already been killed, and another shot in the face, earlier this month.

Rosie Cowan reports:

“Since his release from prison earlier this year he has been working hard to reinvent himself as a man of peace. There was talk of him standing for next May’s Stormont assembly elections. Now there are fears that he could go over to the LVF and spark an all-out war with the UDA.”

Meanwhile, Adair has been warned that he could be re-arrested if he violates the conditions of his licence.

Jack Holland takes a longer view on the development of Loyalist organisations. Previous posts here, here and here.