08 July 2005

Republicans stop Blunkett visit


There was jostling between police and republicans

Former home secretary David Blunkett has called off a visit to west Belfast after a republican protest.

Mr Blunkett was due to visit Springvale Training Centre on Springfield Road with other EU employment ministers.

However, outside the building there was jostling between police and republicans protesting about the re-arrest of Shankill bomber Sean Kelly.

The other ministers were already inside when news came through that Mr Blunkett would not be turning up.

Kelly murdered nine people, including two children, in the attack on a fish shop on Belfast's Shankill Road in 1993.

His IRA accomplice Thomas Begley also died in the blast.

Kelly received nine life sentences but was freed early from prison in July 2000 under the Good Friday Agreement.

He was returned to jail last month after security information indicated he had become "re-involved in terrorism".

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