WITH English public, political and religious _opinion now accurately focused on the civil rights campaign in Ulster, organisers of the protests and demonstrations are anxious that violence should not mar their future activities.
Saturday's march through the streets of Londonderry showed how well they are succeeding. Another bitter clash had been expected and copious precautions had been taken by the police, but in the event things went pretty peaceably.
All-night prayer vigils for a peaceful demonstration were held in the Catholic and Church of Ireland Cathedrals after a delegation of Catholic and Protestant Church leaders had failed to persuade Mr. William Craig, Minister of Home Affairs, to lift his ban on the march passing through the city's ancient walls.
There were isolated incidents of violence during the march, but of negligible proportion when compared with the brutality of the Oct. 5 protest, • v.then 96 people were injured.
Bishop Farren of Derry, in a statement read out at Masses on Sunday, said he was grateful for the peaceful manner in which the proceedings were carried out.
Now the Nationalist party has pledged itself to a guerrilla campaign of non-violence and support for civil disobedience in the fight for social justice for all in the North, irrespective of creed or class.
The South Belfast Presbytery of the Presbyterian Church has called on its members to support policies of tolerance and magnanimity and has reaffirmed the duty of all Christians to work for a just society.
Three Northern Ireland M.P.s are among 46 people who have been summoned under the Public Order Act, 1951, following the Oct. 5 demonstration. They face a variety of charges.
The M.P.s are accused of taking part in a public procession held in contravention of an order made under the Act, whereby a breach of the peace was likely to be occasioned. They are Mr. Gerry Fitt, the Republican Labour M.P., Mr. Austin Currie, Nationalist, and Mr. Eddie McAteer, Nationalist party leader.
About 100 people gathered outside the court in Londonderry on Monday morning, when the case opened. The Crown was granted an adjournment until Dec. 4. Meanwhile 'Mr. Craig, the Home Affairs Minister, is named in four summonses alleging conduct likely to cause a breach of the peace, which were taken out later on Monday by Mr. Ivan Cooper, chairman of the Citizens' Action Committee, and Mr. John Hume, the vice-chairman.
The summonses allege that the offences occurred on Oct. 3, the day Mr. Craig banned the October march, and Oct. 5, when the demonstration was held.