MORE than 283 people were bricked, tortured, petrol-bombed and beheaded during an eventful twinning ceremony between Belfast and Damascus. The decision to pair the two cities was taken at a Belfast city council meeting hastily convened following violent reaction to its decision to limit the number of days the Union flag is flown for City Hall. The council said it was part of the process of including every section of the community under the one banner of a city council determined to build on the peace efforts of recent years and create a safe and stable environment for future generations of Belfast people.
One of the rioters said: “Bugger that. Let’s have a fight.” Council leader Michael Collins (no relation) said: “Given the rioting over the past few weeks, the twinning seemed the obvious thing to do. We have strong ties with other cities where violence is second nature, and we’re happy to reach out our hand across the continent of Europe and through this mutuallybeneficial agreement give our Damascus friends a right thump whenever we want.” A spokesman for President Assad of Syria said: “Oh, God. We are up the creek of shit and without a paddle and no mistake. As if we didn’t have a bad enough public image!”