Michael Keogh of the Nationalist Party blames the rerouting of the civil rights march by the police and government for the disturbances in Newry.

Michael Keogh believes that this parade was unlike any other parade in that people were absolutely united in agreement that the parade should go ahead on the agreed route. For some unknown reason the police stepped in and stopped the parade from going down part of the route. When the police were asked for a reason for the change of route, Keogh says they were met with "cold indifference" by the police.

The parade included protestants, unionists and nationalists, and Keogh argues that the violence erupted as a result of police intervention. All the traders along the route had signed a declaration allowing the parade to go ahead along the original route.