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Protestant march called off after attack on priest

Members of the Orange Order take part in the annual County Grand Orange Order Parade on July 1, 2017 in Glasgow, Scotland (Getty Images)

A Protestant march due to take place in Glasgow on Saturday, July 21 has been cancelled after an attack on a Catholic priest.

Following a meeting with organisers, Glasgow City Council confirmed the Orange march, which would have gone past the church where to attack took place, will not go ahead.

Earlier this month, Canon Tom White was spat on and verbally abused as the parade passed St Alphonsus Church. The Orange Lodge has insisted the incident was nothing to do with the parade, but Council leader Susan Aitken called on the Lodge to take responsibility for anti-Catholic behaviour.

A Council spokeswoman said: “Council officers had a productive meeting with the organisers.

“We will continue to engage with both the organisers and the church community – but have agreed that the planned procession will not take place on Saturday.”

The Grand Orange Lodge of Scotland said: “We welcome the opportunity to continue positive dialogue with Glasgow City Council, the police, and other stakeholders regarding future parades.

“We should be looking forward, not back, and our lodges therefore took the decision to postpone the parade due to take place this Saturday, therefore allowing some additional time over those discussions which would give everyone the opportunity to look at matters from a fresh, forward thinking perspective.

“The Grand Orange Lodge of Scotland fully supports this decision.”

The Orange Order is a Masonic-style Protestant fraternity that was founded in County Armagh, then part of the Kingdom of Ireland, in 1795. It was formed to protect Protestant rule in Ireland during a period of sectarian conflict. The order takes its name from King William of Orange, who ousted the last Catholic king of England, Scotland and Ireland.