Loyalist protests 'dishonouring and shaming the flag'

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The union flag is being "shamed" by people who are using violence to try to protect it, the secretary of state for Northern Ireland has said.

Teresa Villiers made the remarks in a urgent statement to the House of Commons, following eight consecutive nights of trouble across the region.

The violence followed a decision by Belfast City Council to restrict the flying of the flag at the city hall.

Over the past week, 29 police officers have been hurt in loyalist protests.

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