02 July 2005

200,000 form Edinburgh human chain

Guardian

Simon Jeffery and Matthew Tempest in Edinburgh
Saturday July 2, 2005


The Make Poverty History march on Princes Street in Edinburgh. Photograph: Chris Radburn/PA

Around 200,000 protesters today formed a human chain around Edinburgh city centre in a show of solidarity with the world's poorest people.

People came from around the world to attend the Make Poverty History rally and march, which is aimed at putting pressure on the G8 leaders meeting at Gleaneagles next week.

Organisers, police and Edinburgh city council agreed that 200,000 people had been at the event, making it one of Scotland's biggest ever demonstrations.

Most on the march wore white T-shirts, tennis shirts or jumpers and held hands in a human chain - a white band, the symbol of Make Poverty History - during a minute's silence , when the event reached its climax at 3pm.

At 4pm, people were still queueing to join the march, but had to wait because of the sheer number of people.

"It's like the welly queue at Glastonbury, times a hundred," explained Billy Bragg.

The singer, who performed at the rally, said: "In a year's time, if the G8 haven't delivered on aid, on trade, on debt, no one's going to blame Bob Geldof. No one's going to blame Mariah Carey. They're going to blame Blair and Brown and Bush.

"So give the government credit and support - they're talking the talk, we're all standing behind them, and we're going to judge them if they fail.

"They're standing up to Bush. And they're also standing up to Bush on behalf of the millions of Americans who disagree with their administration but can't do anything about it."

The demonstrators massed in Edinburgh's Meadows for a rally of music, video footage from Live 8 and speeches from celebrities and campaigners.

Many were first-time or infrequent demonstrators. Graham Reeve, who travelled from London, last marched on the million-plus February 2003 protest against the Iraq war.

Although he will be returning south tonight, he insisted his 24 hours in Edinburgh was the right thing to do. "I feel pretty strongly about the issues and it's an easy way to make your voice heard," he said.

His companion, Ruth Pegler, agreed. "It's got to have some effect, do some good and make a difference," she said.

Speakers at the rally included Cardinal Keith O'Brien, the leader of Scotland's Roman Catholics, his English counterpart, Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O'Connor, and the Rev David Lacy, the moderator of the general assembly of the Church of Scotland.

A message from Pope Benedict XVI was read out. "People from the world's richest countries should be prepared to accept the burden of debt reduction for heavily indebted poor countries and should urge their leaders to fulfil the pledges made to reduce world poverty, especially in Africa by the year 2015," said the pontiff.

Cardinal Murphy-O'Connor said: "I'm showing solidarity with those people who feel so strongly about this that they have come up here. My main hope is that the leaders of governments will listen to the people."

Cardinal O'Brien said: "I think it will make a difference. It will bring to the attention of world leaders the voice of the people."

Kumi Naidoo, from South Africa, who chairs the global Make Poverty History campaign, said the white wristband had been chosen as a symbol available for everyone to adopt.

He said that rural women in poor countries were using napkins as their symbol, and added: "We've got to keep the pressure going, because at the moment a bureaucrat in the World Bank has more power than a finance minister in a developing country."

The Senegalese musician Baaba Maal, a UN ambassador and Aids campaigner, said: "It is very important for me, as a black African musician travelling the world, that there is this energy."

The chancellor, Gordon Brown, spoke at a Christian Aid rally in Edinburgh tonight. He said the anti-poverty campaign had achieved more in the last months than "politicians working alone could have achieved in 100 years".

"First hundreds, then hundreds of thousands - from Edinburgh to Philadelphia, to Tokyo, Johannesburg, to Rome, Berlin, Paris and Moscow - marching today for justice for people without the strength to march on their own."

Earlier, trumpets and whistles competed with the sound of African drums as the noisy march made its way past Edinburgh's historic university. Bystanders waved rainbow flags of peace as the head of the procession made its way through the Old Town.

Scotland's first minister, Jack McConnell, watched the march as it passed on to Princes Street. He said: "This is fantastic - it is a great carnival atmosphere and it is a message of hope".

Mr McConnell, who had earlier chaired a meeting of international parliamentarians discussing debt, aid and trade, added: "We hope that the leaders of G8 countries are listening. I hope they will make decisions next week in Scotland of which we can be very proud."

Socialists with red flags chanted: "Murder, war, poverty, hate! We say shut down G8!" Police helicopters flew overhead to observe the protest, while shopkeepers and cafe workers the momentous day using mobile camera phones.

A heavy police presence was in place at the Scottish parliament and the palace of Holyrood House, both of which were protected by steel fencing.

Among those at the head of the march was the Zimbabwean campaigner Amadou Kanoute.

"We are at the front here today, and that is the right place because Africa has to be put at the front," he said. "It makes me feel so good to see the solidarity in the people here today."

As the marchers trooped through the city centre, the rally continued with its mix of public demonstration, political event and summer rock festival.

Edinburgh had prepared for months for today's march and events in the run-up to the G8 summit. Despite assurances from authorities that today's event would pass off peacefully, many shops were boarded up. Others displayed Make Poverty History posters in their windows.

Lothian and Borders police mounted a huge security operation, but fears of violence proved unfounded and officers said the day was largely trouble-free.

The comedian and actor Eddie Izzard, one of the comperes, said: "I'm appealing to politicians' egos. I'm saying to them: 'Leave a legacy'. We made slavery history - we can make poverty history".

Hilary Benn, the secretary of state for international development, joined the march.

"A month ago, we met with EU development ministers in Brussels and agreed to double aid to Africa by 2010," he said.

"Two weeks ago, Gordon Brown negotiated a new debt cancellation that will deliver $55bn [£31bn] worth of debt relief to the poorest countries in the world. On Wednesday, Nigeria got the biggest single debt write-off that Africa has ever seen.

"I don't think any of this would have happened if it hadn't been for Britain putting Africa at the centre of the G8 and for the fact there is a growing body of people who want this changed."

Steve Tibbett, the head of policy at the charity ActionAid, said: "Perhaps 200,000 people are here to demand justice for the world's poor people.

"The strong feeling coming across is that people are not just here to have fun. They are actually angry and they want something done. They won't accept any more spin from the G8 leaders."

Filipino activist Walden Bello, director of the thinktank Focus on the Global South, said: "When the leaders talk of wiping out $25bn of debt, remember they found $30bn for the Iraq war at the drop of a hat."

In Ireland, few safe havens for an ancient tongue

csmonitor.com

Posted to republicanarmy by Ernst Techow

A dispute over Irish-only road signs in some towns highlights the language's weakening grip.

By Ron DePasquale | Contributor to The Christian Science Monitor

INIS MEÁIN ISLAND, IRELAND - On this tiny, wind-swept island at Europe's western edge, a shopkeeper makes a proud gesture toward the radio, which blares the midday news in an ancient, dying language.

Irish Gaelic is still the native tongue of some 55,000 people who live mostly along the west coast. But it is under siege. Even Inis Meáin, one of three Aran Islands off the coast of County Galway famed for old-fashioned ways, is no longer a safe haven.

"Irish is in trouble," says Cuomhán Ó Fátharta, Inis Meáin's sole shopkeeper. "When I was young, you had to learn English in school because there was no TV. I couldn't really speak English until I was 12, but now the kids are all picking it up young."

As Ireland's mother tongue struggles to survive, the government has stepped up its contentious efforts to save the language, known here simply as Irish.

The European Union (EU) gave Irish a symbolic boost when it recognized it as an official language on June 13, three decades after Ireland joined the union. Road signs in the scattered Irish-speaking towns and islands - known collectively as the Gaeltacht - have posted place names exclusively in Irish since April. And new Gaeltacht housing developments must reserve homes for Irish speakers.

Critics call these tactics costly shenanigans that only engender resentment against a language that schoolchildren must study for 13 years. The minority who become fluent have little chance to speak Irish outside the Gaeltacht.

"For the majority of students, the Irish language now exists for the sake of perpetuating its own death grip on the school system," columnist Louise Holden wrote recently in The Irish Times.

Yet on Inis Meáin, Mr. Ó Fátharta says the road sign kerfuffle won't last. Tourists will adapt, he says, and such forceful government action is essential to sustain the language. He points to the success of state-supported Irish-language radio and TV, which have grown in popularity, and the invasion of students who come to County Galway to study Irish every summer.

"People want to learn the language," he says. "That's why they keep coming."

In mostly English-speaking Galway City, pubs serve as a place for people to speak Irish. At Taffees, where traditional Irish bands play every night, an encouraging sign at the bar says, "Irish spoken here." Yet many native Irish speakers feel uncomfortable speaking their language outside their hometowns, a self- consciousness that experts say prevents the spread of Irish as a spoken language.

Irish has been declining for centuries, since families hoping to better their prospects made children speak English instead of Irish. Hoping to reverse that trend, the nation's founders made Irish the primary language and a core school subject after independence from Britain in 1921.

Yet today, just 43 percent of Irish citizens say they can speak the language, and only 1.4 percent are native speakers.

Michael Faherty, who rents bicycles to tourists on Inis Meáin, says he is realistic about the language's hold on the young. "They're turning to English now," he says as he fixes a bicycle to a background of traditional Irish music. "It's more fashionable."

Irish language activists want a bilingual nation. Some blame a curriculum that focuses on grammar and rote memorization, rather than teaching conversational Irish. Others say that the complex language must be modernized, following Israel's success in reviving Hebrew.

The growth of Irish-language schools, or gaelscoileanna, has lifted hopes for the language's survival. Outside Gaeltacht areas, 52 Irish-language elementary schools have been created since 1993, bringing the number to 120. And more books are being translated into Irish; students can now read Harry Potter in the old language.

The lucrative field of official Irish translation is also booming, thanks to a law passed two years ago that requires all government documents and services to be provided in Irish. The new EU designation created a need for dozens more well-paid Irish speakers to translate EU documents and interpret at parliamentary and ministerial meetings. Yet the government says it can't find enough to keep up with the work.

An elderly woman on Inis Meáin, wearing a traditional long dark skirt and shawl, spoke wistfully about her native language.

"I don't know who will speak the Irish after the old people are gone," says the 80-year-old woman, who did not give her name. "The youngsters are all learning English, too much English."

LEONARD PELTIER HAS BEEN MOVED

Seven Stars Republican Socialist News

**Posted by 'Break the Chains'

FROM THE Leonard Peltier Defense Committee HEADQUARTERS

CALL TO ACTION FOR LEONARD PELTIER, #89637-132



This morning, July 1, 2005, Cyrus Peltier, grandson of Leonard went to visit his grandpa as he has for the last 13 years. He was stopped at the visiting area and was told, "He's gone". Upon questioning, he was told that Leonard was transferred and after further inquiries, finally found out that Leonard has been moved to USP Terre Haute, Indiana. At this time, Leonard is in the hole and is being kept there
indefinitely. NOW IS THE TIME TO ACT.

It is basic procedure to keep transferred inmates in the hole while processing takes place, however we do not know how long that will take. We are asking anyone and everyone to get on the phones and get out their pens and paper. Let's flood the telephones with calls regarding Leonard! Let's stuff their mailboxes with letters about Leonard! Urge the prison to allow Leonard to contact his family as soon as possible. Ask how he is, ask where to write, ask if he's OK, ask about his health, his privileges (phones, letters, visits, religious rights, ability to paint, etc.) inquire as to his safety-anything-just keep calling and let the prison know that the entire world is watching and is concerned about Leonard. Please be sure to be courteous and professional, as we do not wish to complicate Leonard's situation.

The Leonard Peltier Defense Committee, Peltier Legal Team and Leonard's family are working hard to ensure Leonard's safety and we will keep you informed as things develop.

Mitakuye Oyasin.

LPDC, Inc
Leonard Peltier Defense Committee website


USP Terre Haute
U.S. Penitentiary
4700 Bureau Road South
Terre Haute, IN 47802
Phone-812-244-4400
Fax----812-244-4789
THP/EXECASSISTANT@BOP.GOV

Federal Bureau of Prisons
320 First Street NW
Washington, DC 20534
202-307-3198
info@bop.gov

Blogspot blues

This is a blog issue post. I am not happy with Blogger anymore at all. I had to change the template, and now, although I don't mind the looks of it, it loads so slowly and jerkily and scrolls so clumsily, I can't stand it. You can see the difference in loading by looking at this site at the locations linked up at the top. Plus here at Blogger the search feature sucks, and when you open up a weekly archive, you get about 150 posts which take forever to load. The one thing I like about Blogger is Blog This! which makes the link for you, but I can use that feature anyway on other blog sites. The bottom line is that this location gets only a handful of hits compared to the other sites, so I don't think I'm the only one who doesn't like Blogger. I started out with it in 2003, but I'm seriously considering dropping this one location. Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

GREEDY HANDS

Sinn Féin

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Update from Rossport 5

Indymedia Ireland

by M. Ní Sheighin
Saturday, Jul 2 2005, 4:16pm
Mayo / rights and freedoms / news report

Focal faighte ó Cloverhill

In Cloverhill prison this morning, July 2nd, Micheál Ó Seighin said that what the 5 men who are in jail want is for the normal technical standards of the oil and gas companies themselves to be applied by Shell. They are not looking for any privileges.

They will not purge their contempt if it means putting people’s lives in danger. They have no contempt for the courts, but human life has a higher value than a High Court injunction.

I bPriosún Cloverhill maidin inniu, 2 Iúil, dúirt Micheál Ó Seighin nach raibh ón gcúigear fear atá sa bpríosún ach go gcuirfeadh Shell i bhfeidhm na gnáthchaighdeáin teicniúla atá ag na comhlachtaí ola agus gáis iad fhéin. Níl said ag lorg aon phribhléid nó aon rud eisceachtúil.

Níl said chun leorghníomh a dhéanamh sa díspeagadh seo más ionann sin agus sláinte muintir an Rois a chur i mbaol. Níl aon dímheas acu ar na cúirteanna, ach tá an bheatha níos tábhachtaí ná urghaire de chuid na hArd-Chúirte.

Sectarian attack 'shamed' Carrick

Belfast Telegraph

Six jailed for storming Catholic couple's home

02 July 2005

SIX Carrickfergus men who brought shame on the Co Antrim seaside town last July when they formed a sectarian mob to drive a Catholic couple and a friend from their home have been sentenced to up to four-and-a-half years in jail.

Belfast Judge Babbington in the Crown Court yesterday told the six, who said they were from the UVF and were going to burn the victims from their home, that they were guilty of a "brutal and callous attack which had brought shame on the good people of Carrickfergus".

The judge said that the men had "formed themselves into a mob, akin to a lynch mob" during the sectarian attack on July 24 last year, in which one man was hospitalised after being thrown through a window.

Prosecuting QC Carl Simpson said in the aftermath of the attack the family and their friend left their Carrick homes that night vowing never to return again.

Given the highest jail term of four-and-a-half years after agreeing to serve a further year on probation was 31-year-old Leonard McCullough of Maple Gardens in the town.

Jailed for four years was 42-year-old Norman Hendry from The Hollies and Philip Wills (26) of Dean Park. Given two-and-a-half years was Robert Barnett (27) of Victoria Street. Two years was given to 21-year-old James Brown of Minorca Drive while 21-year-old Emerson Meeke of Albert Road, was jailed for 12 months.

All but Meeke, who admitted affray, had pleaded guilty to assault and also agreed to serve a year's probation upon their release.

Prosecuting QC Carl Simpson said the attack happened after a man went to a friend's home in Thomas Street with his sister looking for "sanctuary" after being confronted outside an off licence.

Shortly afterwards there was "unfriendly knock on the door" and when opened, McCullough and the others forced entry, attacking the householder and his friend.

The friend was punched and kicked to the ground and had a TV, video, beer cans and a chair thrown at him, before being thrown out the front living room window.

Mr Simpson also revealed that while he had his legs trapped in the window blinds attempts were made to stamp his face into the broken glass outside. He managed to run off, but was set upon again before he eventually made his escape.

The man's sister, who tried to phone police, had her mobile snatched from her and during the attack McCullough was heard to shout they were from the UVF and that the family were to be burned out and had ten minutes to leave.

Mr Simpson said once police arrived they had to escort the family from their home to safety.

Criticism over police handling of mini-Twelfth

Belfast Telegraph

By Brian Hutton
newsdesk@belfasttelegraph.co.uk
02 July 2005

POLICE chiefs were today criticised for their handling of last night's Orange parade in Belfast which ended with minor disturbances.

Witnesses claimed that a group of youths in the nationalist Markets area, some with hurling sticks, threw stones at cars leaving the "mini-Twelfth" parade in the east of the city.

There were reports that two children had to be hospitalised for minor injuries after a window was smashed in the car they were travelling in.

There were also claims that a police officer had been injured, but a PSNI spokeswoman said today that it had received no complaints or reports of any injuries.

She said that a few cars were damaged and a number of windows were broken during the incident at the junction of East Bridge Street and Stewart Street at around 8.30pm.

East Belfast DUP councillor and District Policing Partnership member Jim Rodgers criticised the "over-policing" of the parade.

"I counted 30 Army and 10 police Land Rovers as I was travelling on the Sydenham By-pass on the way to the march," he said.

"These then moved into the area where the parade was, yet 200 yards away (in the Markets area), where there have been repeated attacks in the past, there was only one Land Rover.

"The police are not getting this right. There is a massive presence in one area and very little in the other.

"Part of the problem is that police officers don't know the area," he added.

Tensions are never far from the surface in militant loyalism

Belfast Telegraph



By Jonathan McCambridge, Crime Correspondent
jmccambridge@belfasttelegraph.co.uk
02 July 2005

THE murder of Jameson Lockhart could spark the latest in a series of bloody loyalist feuds which have ignited tensions across Northern Ireland.

It is feared the east Belfast shooting could restart the bitter vendetta between the LVF and UVF that led to a spate of shootings and bombings in 2003.

Earlier this week, tensions within the UDA also resurfaced after a former associate of Johnny Adair was cleared of murder.

Wayne Stephen Dowie left Ulster within hours of being cleared of the murder of UDA feud victim Jonathan Stewart on Thursday.

He travelled alone, taking an afternoon flight to England following furious scenes in court.

Earlier this week the UDA moved to wash its hands of a loyalist fanatic, after he was convicted of trying to blow up one of Adair's aides.

Stanley Curry from Liverpool, although not a member of the UDA, had planted a bomb under the car of John 'Fat Jackie' Thompson. Thompson survived because the bomb failed to detonate properly.

Adair himself made a surprise visit to the Shankill earlier this year and has vowed to return again. It is thought in some circles that the Twelfth period would be an ideal time for another publicity stunt to infuriate his UDA enemies.

Yesterday's killing took place at the site of a pub owned by former UDA boss Jim Gray, but is believed to involve tensions between the UVF and LVF.

Loyalist sources indicated yesterday that Mr Lockhart had been a target of the UVF for some time. He had escaped one previous shooting attempt.

Tensions between the two groups erupted in 2003 following the UVF murder of LVF man Brian Stewart at Montgomery Road in east Belfast.

It led to a spate of revenge bomb attacks and shootings.

Earlier this year tensions boiled over again following a series of attacks on a taxi firm owned by former PUP man Jackie Mahood.

Mr Mahood, who was shot in the head by the UVF four years ago, accused the terror group of trying to put him out of business.

Only weeks ago there was mayhem in a Belfast court when rival loyalist gangs brawled minutes before a judgment was due to be delivered in the case of murdered Red Hand Commando drug dealing supremo, Jim Johnston.


Protests over Mayo pipeline continue

RTE

02 July 2005 15:52

The campaign for the release of the five men who were jailed for their opposition to a controversial Shell gas pipeline in Co Mayo, is continuing over the weekend.

There are to be further demonstrations planned for today and tomorrow. The largest which will take place in Castlebar tomorrow.

The Independent Mayo TD, Dr Gerry Cowley, who is organising the march and rally, said the mood of abhorrence at the jailing of the five men was growing nationwide.

He called on Shell to reach a compromise on its plan to construct the high-pressure pipeline and the onshore terminal and cited fears for health and safety.

Shell Ireland has denied that the pipeline presents a hazard to the north Mayo area and has said it has no intention of suspending its work on the Corrib Gas Project or of withdrawing from Mayo.

Five TD's visited the men, who spend a second night in Clover Hill Prison last night.

The men told the TD's there was no question of them abandoning their opposition to the pipeline being laid on their land.

Tales from the confessional: Julian Barnes on 'Ireland's Chekhov' Frank O'Connor

Guardian

Image Hosted by ImageShack.us
Frank O'Connor - photo from here

Frank O'Connor's imaginative sympathy and gift for eavesdropping prompted Yeats to describe him as Ireland's Chekhov. But, writes Julian Barnes, O'Connor was also an obsessive rewriter

Saturday July 2, 2005
The Observer

'I first came to Frank O'Connor by way of a possessive pronoun. The fiction shelves of a secondhand bookshop in Dublin proposed an antique orange Penguin: author's name in white, title in black, no strident capitals on the spine, and the cover taken up with what was in those days a come-on - a blurry author photo. It was not this, or the distinctly familiar name that made me buy it (the original 3/5d now having become six euros), but the title. My Oedipus Complex and Other Stories. It was the slyly inviting "My" that did it. A lesser writer might have settled for "The", and the book would have stayed on its shelf.'


>>>Read article


Read Frank O'Connor's short story My Oedipus Complex


--------------------

Online prayer request page launched by nuns

BreakingNews.ie

Anyone have the website address for this?

02/07/2005 - 12:22:28

For anyone feeling in need of some divine intervention, a new online service means a praying nun is only a click away.

One of Ireland's longest established teaching orders has launched a prayer request page on its website.

Those who log a request get a response from a nun in the order, who then prays on their behalf.

Sister Moya Hegarty from the Ursuline order says the service is designed to give people someone to turn to.

“It’s an opportunity to connect with somebody whose role is to notice what the prayer is and to pray specifically for that person,” Sister Hegarty said.

The nuns acknowledge the prayer request and it is then "brought in prayer before God", said Sister Hegarty.

Edinburgh protesters form human chain

Guardian

Simon Jeffery and Matthew Tempest
Saturday July 2, 2005

Tens of thousands of protesters today formed a human chain around Edinburgh city centre in a show of solidarity with the world's poorest people.

In one of Scotland's biggest ever demonstrations, around 120,000 - 20,000 more than predicted - arrived in the city for the Make Poverty History rally and march, aimed at putting pressure on G8 leaders meeting in Scotland next week.

Protesters, dressed in white, linked arms at 3pm and remained silent for one minute as the event reached its climax.

Trumpets and whistles competed with the sound of African drums as the march made its way past Edinburgh's historic university. Bystanders waved rainbow peace flags as the head of the procession made its way through the Old Town.

Socialists with red flags chanted "murder, war, poverty, hate, we say shut down G8" as the thousands made their way along the tree-lined avenue.

Police helicopters flew overhead to observe the protest, while shopkeepers and cafe workers recorded the momentous day using their mobile camera phones.

Among those at the head of the march was the Zimbabwean campaigner Amadou Kanoute.

"We are at the front here today, and that is the right place because Africa has to be put at the front," he said.

"It makes me feel so good to see the solidarity in the people here today."

As the marchers trooped through the city centre, the rally continued with its mix of public demonstration, political event and summer rock festival.

The comedian and actor Eddie Izzard, one of the comperes, said: "I'm appealing to politicians' egos. I'm saying to them: 'Leave a legacy'. We made slavery history - we can make poverty history."

Scotland's first minister, Jack McConnell, watched the march as it passed on to Princes Street. He said: "This is fantastic - it is a great carnival atmosphere and it is a message of hope".

Mr McConnell, who had earlier chaired a meeting of international parliamentarians to discuss debt, aid and trade, added: "We hope that the leaders of G8 countries are listening. I hope they will make decisions next week in Scotland of which we can be very proud."

Graham Reeve, who travelled from London, last marched on the million-plus February 2003 protest against the Iraq war.

Although he will be returning south tonight, he insisted his 24 hours in Edinburgh was the right thing to do. "I feel pretty strongly about the issues, and it's an easy way to make your voice heard," he said.

His companion, Ruth Pegler, agreed. "It's got to have some effect, do some good and make a difference," she said.

Edinburgh has been preparing for the march and other events in the run-up to the summit for months.

Despite reassurances from authorities that today's event would pass off peacefully, many shops were boarded up, but others displayed Make Poverty History posters in their windows.

A heavy police presence was in place at key locations including the Scottish parliament and the Palace of Holyroodhouse, both of which were protected by steel fencing.

Speakers at the rally include Cardinal Keith O'Brien, the leader of Scotland's Roman Catholics, his English counterpart, Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O'Connor, and the Rev David Lacy, the Moderator of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland.

A message from Pope Benedict XVI will be read out.

"I'm showing solidarity with those people who feel so strongly about this that they have come up here," Cardinal Murphy-O'Connor said. "My main hope is that the leaders of governments will listen to the people."

Cardinal O'Brien said: "I think it will make a difference. It will bring to the attention of world leaders the voice of the people."

Kumi Naidoo, from South Africa, who chairs the global Make Poverty History campaign, said the white wristband had been chosen as a symbol available for everyone to adopt.

Rural women in poor countries were using napkins as their symbol, he said. "We've got to keep the pressure going because, at the moment, a bureaucrat in the World Bank has more power than a finance minister in a developing country."

The Senegalese musician Baaba Maal, a UN ambassador and Aids campaigner, said: "It is very important for me, as a black African musician travelling the world, that there is this energy."

Hilary Benn, secretary of state for international development, also joined the march.

"A month ago we met with EU development ministers in Brussels and agreed to double aid to Africa by 2010," he said. "Two weeks ago, Gordon Brown negotiated a new debt cancellation that will deliver $55bn [£31bn] worth of debt relief to the poorest countries in the world.

"On Wednesday, Nigeria got the biggest single debt write-off that Africa has ever seen.

"I don't think any of this would have happened if it hadn't been for Britain putting Africa at the centre of the G8 and for the fact there is a growing body of people who want this changed."

Steve Tibbett, the head of policy at the charity ActionAid, said: "Perhaps 200,000 people are here to demand justice for the world's poor people.

"The strong feeling coming across is that people are not just here to have fun. They are actually angry and they want something done. They won't accept any more spin from the G8 leaders."

And the Filipino activist Walden Bello, the director of the thinktank Focus on the Global South, said: "When the leaders talk of wiping out $25bn of debt, remember they found $30bn for the Iraq war at the drop of a hat."

U2 & McCartney kick start Live8 spectacular

RTE

02 July 2005 15:36

The main concert in the Live8 series of global events designed to raise awareness of African poverty is underway in London's Hyde Park in front of a crowd of over 150,000 people.

Performing at the spectacular are Sir Paul McCartney, Madonna, Coldplay, Sir Elton John, Robbie Williams and U2.

The events from London, South African, Japan, Italy, France, Germany, Russia, the US, Canada, and Edinburgh are expected to attract a global television audience of two billion.
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In London, Paul McCartney and U2 opened the show with a rendition of Sergeant Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band.

US software billionaire, Bill Gates, also made a surprise appearance at the London concert to back the campaign.

Organiser Bob Geldof said his aim was to force leaders of the Group of Eight major industrialised nations, meeting in Scotland next week, to do more to alleviate poverty, particularly in Africa.

Meanwhile, an estimated 120,000 people have gathered for the Make Poverty History rally, which is under way in Edinburgh.

Marchers are due to form a human chain round the city centre.

A 2,000 strong police security operation is in place although police say they are hopeful there will not be any trouble.


G8 protesters held by police

BBC

Three coach loads of anti G8 protesters from Belfast were stopped at Stranraer and held by Scottish police for more than an hour.

Barbara Muldoon from the Anti-Racism Network said they were held under the Prevention of Terrorism Act. She said those on board were photographed and had their bags searched.

"We condemn the detentions and the flagrant abuse of our rights not to mention the heavily weighed PTA to carry it out," she said.

Map links 'Piano Man' to Norway

BBC


The unidentified man was found in a soaking wet suit

Hospital officials trying to discover the identity of the so-called Piano Man are looking into the possibility he could be from Norway.

The virtuoso pianist has not spoken since being found in a soaking wet suit in Sheerness, Kent, in April.

A Norwegian speaker has been trying to communicate with the man, who is in his 20s or early 30s, after he was shown a map and pointed to Oslo.

A ship from Norway was thought to have been in the area when he was found.

The man is being cared for in a secure mental health unit in Dartford, Kent.

Various interpreters

He stunned carers with a four-hour concert-standard piano performance after producing detailed pencil drawings of a grand piano soon after he was found on 7 April.

There have been few clues as to his identity since.

More than 200 names have been put forward and are being investigated by the West Kent NHS Trust in conjunction with the police and the National Missing Persons Helpline.

However, the man was reportedly more responsive when a Norwegian speaker was brought in, although it is understood he still did not say anything.

A spokesman for the trust told the BBC that various interpreters had been used, and Norway could "logically be looked at as an option".


Live 8 concert screened in city

BBC


Live 8 concerts hope to tackle world poverty

The BBC is screening a Live 8 concert broadcast in Belfast on Saturday.

A 40-metre screen in Custom House Square, Laganside, will beam out the London charity concert.

The BBC hopes to enable audiences to text messages in to the broadcast and to a special website and swap messages with other screen sites.

The London concert is one of 10 Live 8 gigs taking place on Saturday - one in each of the G8 nations, one in South Africa and a smaller gig in Cornwall.

On Friday, a series of events to highlight Northern Ireland's solidarity with the poorest nations of the world were staged.

A giant white band was stretched around one of the tallest buildings in Belfast - the Riverside BT Tower.

Another measuring 150 metres was wrapped around the Lanyon building at Queen's University.

Saturday's concerts have been timed to coincide with the G8 summit of world leaders in Scotland on 6 July and will call for more aid for Africa, debt cancellation and fairer trade.

A further concert will take place on 6 July in Edinburgh as the summit begins.

Files on Himmler 'murder' exposed as fake

Telegraph

By Ben Fenton
(Filed: 02/07/2005)

The forensic evidence [pdf]

Documents from the National Archives used to substantiate claims that British intelligence agents murdered Heinrich Himmler in 1945 are forgeries, The Daily Telegraph can reveal today.

It seems certain that the bogus documents were somehow planted among genuine papers to pervert the course of historical study.


Himmler: Forgeries implicated Churchill in his 'murder'

The results of investigations by forensic document experts on behalf of this newspaper have shocked historians and caused tremors at the Archives, the home of millions of historical documents, which has previously been thought immune to distortion or contamination.

The allegation that the SS leader was murdered, with the knowledge of Churchill and War Cabinet ministers, appeared in Himmler's Secret War, published in May.

What made the claim stand out from other allegations over the years was that it referred to specific documents in the National Archives at Kew - usually an absolute guarantee of validity.

But after The Daily Telegraph, like other newspapers, was approached to publicise the book, the documents began to raise suspicions.

The improbability of allegations that flatly contradict the accepted fact that Himmler killed himself and the use of language in documents that read more like excerpts from a spy thriller than dry civil service memos prompted this newspaper to raise concerns with the National Archives.

Officials gave permission for documents to be taken to the laboratories in Amersham, Bucks, of Dr Audrey Giles, one of the foremost forensic document specialists.

She discovered that letterheads on correspondence supposedly written in 1945 were created on a high-resolution laser printer, technology not developed until at least 50 years later.

Signatures supposed to be those of Brendan Bracken, the minister of information and head of the Political Warfare Executive, which aimed to subvert the German war effort, were found to be written over pencil tracings.

Dr Giles also found that it was almost certain that letters from two different government departments were written on the same, authentically contemporary, typewriter.

She concluded that at least four of the five suspect documents were forgeries and probably the fifth.

The findings were communicated to the National Archives this week, where a spokesman said: "We are very concerned and have commissioned an official forensic examination of these papers."

Asked if there would be a police investigation, he said: "We are taking this one step at a time, but we are taking it very seriously."

There is no suggestion that the Archives could have prevented papers being smuggled in.

The forged documents suggest that Himmler was killed by a PWE agent called Leonard Ingrams, the father of Richard Ingrams, the former editor of Private Eye.

The assassination was the supposed idea of two senior Foreign Office men, John Wheeler-Bennett and Sir Robert Bruce Lockhart.

But it was allegedly supported by Bracken and the Earl of Selborne, the head of the Special Operations Executive (SOE), the sabotage organisation set up by Churchill with the order to "set Europe ablaze".

Prof M R D Foot, the SOE official historian, said: "This story was twisting history and it will not do.

"It was obviously bogus, but I am very grateful that it has been proved to be so."

The findings of Dr Giles's examination were put yesterday to Martin Allen, the book's author. There is no suggestion that he was anything but a fall guy for the forgers.

"I think I have been set up," he said. "But I do not even know by whom. I am absolutely devastated."

He denied having anything to do with the creation of the documents.

See also: De-bunking Speer as 'good' Nazi



ON THIS DAY: IRA murders 'informers'

BBC: ON THIS DAY

2 JULY 1992


The bodies were discovered by a roadside in South Armagh

The IRA has admitted killing the three men found by the army at different roadsides in South Armagh last night.

They claim the men were informers for MI5 and the Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) Special Branch and they had been tried and killed by the IRA.

The victims were from Portadown, County Armagh and have been identified as Gregory Burns, 33, John Dignam, 32, and Aidan Starrs, 29.

In a style typical of IRA ritual killings the bodies were found in ditches, naked and hooded with evidence of beatings and single bullets through the backs of the heads.

The IRA tried to justify the murders in an unusually detailed statement, outlining the intelligence work of the three and linking them to the murder of civil servant Margaret Perry, 26.

Her body was found on Tuesday in a shallow grave over the border in Mullaghmore, County Sligo after she disappeared on her way to work in Portadown over a year ago.

The IRA claim that Ms Perry was having an affair with one of the dead men, Mr Burns, but says she had threatened to expose the group's intelligence links to the IRA, so they had kidnapped and murdered her.

All three men disappeared from their homes a few days ago and their bodies were dumped close to the border within 10 miles of each other, at Newtownhamilton, Bessbrook and Crossmaglen.

The army left them overnight in case they had been booby trapped.

These are the first killings in Northern Ireland in eight weeks, and come in the wake of recent progress at talks in Stormont, Belfast and London.

Speaking in the House of Commons, Prime Minister John Major said, "The IRA's actions demonstrate yet again the true nature of terrorism".

In Context

The three men were buried within days of their discovery, along with Margaret Perry, in Portadown.

The exact truth behind their activities and deaths remains unclear, but letters written by the men shortly before their disappearances suggest that they knew they were going to die.

Some evidence suggests that at least one of them was involved in the recovery of Ms Perry's body.

Peace talks at Stormont continued until December 1993 when Irish Prime Minister Albert Reynolds and British Prime Minister John Major agreed The Downing Street Declaration.

It laid the foundations for future multi-party talks and aimed to achieve self-determination based on consensus in Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.



Ógra SF Shut Statoil Down

Indymedia Ireland

by Ógra Shinn Féin
Friday, Jul 1 2005, 8:19pm

Dublin Ógra Shinn Féin activists shut down the Statoil filling station on Usher's Quay, Dublin, at half six this evening. They were carrying out a solidarity protest with the Rossport Five and the local community in their struggle against Shell and Statoil.

An attempt to seize the office and shop of the filling station was repulsed so activists contented themselves with locking the shop closed and shutting down the petrol pumps.

Drivers were leafletted as they entered the station and the reasons for shutting it down were explained.

With one or two exceptions the overwhelming majority of drivers were supportive. A number of drivers expressed surprise that Statoil was involved in the pipeline with Shell and stated they wouldn't be using the company in future.

While the station Manager notified the police as the activists arrived a number of police cars that drove by during the protest made no attempt to intervene.

After keeping the station closed for just under 90 minutes the protest ended peacefully and the locks were lifted.

An Ógra Shinn Féin activist said: "Ógra Shinn Féin will continue to carry out these actions at times and places of our choosing until the five men are released and the demands of the people of Erris met.

"We know we will be joined in this by people of other parties and none who will put aside political differences to concentrate on a simple goal; shut these companies down".


Justice Department blocks Adams prison visit

BreakingNews.ie

01/07/2005 - 20:44:35

The Department of Justice intervened this evening to prevent Sinn Féin leader Gerry Adams from visiting the five Mayo men jailed on Wednesday for breaching a High Court injunction.

The men were jailed for obstructing the building of a Shell gas pipeline through their lands at Rossport in County Mayo.

Gerry Adams had planned to visit the men at Clover Hill prison tomorrow but that has now been ruled out by the Department of Justice - a decision described by Sinn Féin as "bizarre".

Mr Adams described the move – and the jailing of the men – as "appalling".







Children injured in car stoning

BBC


Cars were attacked after leaving parade

Two children have been taken to hospital after stonethrowers attacked cars in the Markets area of Belfast.

They were covered in glass after the window of the car they were in was smashed. However, they were not seriously injured.

Eyewitnesses said a crowd of youths, some armed with hurling sticks, attacked several cars.

The driver of the car - who did not want to be identified - said it had been a frightening experience.

He said his 10-year-old child was sitting beside the window which was smashed.

He said those involved in the attack were aged about 10 or 11, but said older people were standing nearby with hurling sticks.

The vehicles were being driven by people leaving the mini Twelfth parade in east Belfast.

There was a major security presence for the march - particularly at the flashpoint area near the Short Strand- but it passed off peacefully.

Sinn Fein's Alex Maskey said there was no excuse for the attack on the cars.

01 July 2005

Unionist flags a disgrace: SF

Belfast Telegraph

01 July 2005

A Mid-Ulster Sinn Fein MLA has called on the Department of Rural Development and Magherafelt Council to take action over what she describes as the ongoing problem of flags in Magherafelt town centre.

Geraldine Dougan said the town was a disgrace through the latent display of unionist sectarian flags which did nothing for the image of the town.

Fears over loyalist feud ending in attacks on Catholics

Sinn Féin

Published: 1 July, 2005

East Belfast Sinn Féin Representative Deborah Devenny said that nationalists in the area were deeply concerned that the latest internal loyalist feud killing would eventually lead to attacks on their community.

Ms Devenny said:

"Today's killing in broad daylight on the Newtownards Road is obviously linked to some ongoing internal feud between different factions of the unionist paramilitary gangs. However history teaches us that at the end of such feuds unionist paramilitaries tend to unite around attacking Catholics.

"With the marching season well underway and the Orange Order heightening tensions across Belfast, this killing will add to the fears of nationalists particularly in areas like the Short Strand that unionist paramilitary threats and attacks will once again turn on them

"The timing of this killing hours before the annual UVF and Orange Order parade past the Short Strand district takes place obviously raises these fears further and I would appeal to nationalists in East Belfast and indeed elsewhere to remain vigilant this evening and in the coming days." ENDS

Interviewees silent

Daily Ireland

By Conor McMorrow
c.mcmorrow@dailyireland.com

Two people interviewed by gardaí after the discovery of the partially-clothed body of a woman on a remote Donegal beach in 2003 refused to give statements to gardaí, Daily Ireland has learned.
The body of Derry-based academic, poet and former member of the Irish Republican Socialist Party, Mary Reid, was discovered on the Isle of Doagh on the evening of January 29, 2003.
While gardaí treated Ms Reid’s death as suicide, her family have never been satisfied with the Garda investigation into her death and have now called on the force to re-open the case.
Daily Ireland has learned that the Reid family received a letter from the gardaí last week stating that two men “were interviewed by Garda Jason Lyons on June 12, 2003” and “both men declined to make statements”.
Ms Reid’s brother, Joseph Reid, said: “We are not calling for any gardaí to be sacked or anything like that. We just want them to investigate her death as we believe there were a number of inadequacies in the original investigation that did not emerge at the inquest.”
The inquest into the death of Mary Reid took place in Letterkenny Courthouse on September 5, 2003 and the Reid family believes that “the inquest left more questions unanswered than answered”.
At the inquest an open verdict of “death by drowning” was returned, in the words of the coroner “to allow further evidence to be brought forward”.
In the letter received by Ms Reid’s siblings, a Garda representative said: “I must state that after considering the evidence available at this stage there is nothing to substantiate the theory that there was foul play involved in Mary’s death.”
In response to this, Mr Reid said: “The letter states that there is no evidence of foul play in Mary’s death.
“However the point we have been making for the past few years is that a full investigation should be carried out to see if there is any evidence of foul play.”
The Reid family claim that their senior counsel, Patrick Gageby, established at Ms Reid’s inquest her body was removed from the location in which she was found without the body being preserved for forensic examination, and no forensic samples were taken at the site.
“The gardaí should have looked into Mary’s death to see if it was an accident, a homicide or a suicide. The fact that the scene was not preserved effectively closed the door to any forensic information being procured,” said Mr Reid.






Passing the buck

Daily Ireland

By Jarlath Kearney
j.kearney@dailyireland.com

Now the psni is blaming prison service for rearrest of Seán Kelly

The Prison Service of Northern Ireland was involved in initiating the cycle of events that led to the detention of republican ex-prisoner Seán Kelly.
In a bizarre twist to the controversy over the arrest of the north Belfast man, the PSNI admitted yesterday that it had been contacted by the Prison Service of Northern Ireland in relation to the conditions of licence enjoyed by Mr Kelly, who was released in 2000 under the terms of the Good Friday Agreement.
PSNI Chief Constable Hugh Orde said previously that he had no part in the process that led to Mr Kelly’s arrest.
At yesterday’s Policing Board meeting, Detective Chief Superintendent Noel Topping told members: “Following contact from the Northern Ireland Prison Service, PSNI passed to them information in its possession relating to the conditions subject to which Seán Kelly was released from prison.
“Subsequently, the secretary of state for Northern Ireland suspended Kelly’s licence and recalled him to prison.”
Last night, Sinn Féin spokesman Gerry Kelly accused the authorities of “lurching from excuse to excuse in desperate attempts to justify the re-arrest of Seán Kelly”.
“This shows up the farce which is British attempts to explain away their decision to intern Seán Kelly,” he said.
“The fact is that there is no reason why Seán Kelly should be in jail.”

The PSNI was approached by the North’s Prison Service about the case of Seán Kelly before the Belfast republican was arrested, it has emerged.
Yesterday’s revelation heightened concerns about the role of the Prison Service in the circumstances surrounding Mr Kelly’s arrest.
Last week, just four days after his arrest, Mr Kelly was threatened and assaulted by a loyalist inmate at Maghaberry prison in Lisburn, Co Antrim, after he had been placed in a communal holding area.
Campaigners for Mr Kelly argued that this Prison Service action had endangered his life by contravening basic conditions of the Northern Ireland Office’s jail segregation policy.
The composition of the Prison Service has increasingly been criticised by nationalist politicians. Figures released in May showed that less than nine per cent of the 2,000-strong workforce is Catholic.
Republicans have consistently accused the Prison Service of failing to adhere to safety provisions.
In one high-profile incident in 2003, a leading member of the Ulster Defence Association physically attacked a republican remand prisoner. Prison records later revealed that prison warders had stood watching as a verbal assault against the republican developed into an all-out attack over the course of six minutes. Loyalist inmates at Maghaberry prison continue to far outnumber republicans.
At yesterday’s public session of the North’s Policing Board in Belfast, PSNI Detective Chief Superintendent Noel Topping disclosed the role of the Prison Service.
“Following contact from the Northern Ireland Prison Service, PSNI passed to them information in its possession relating to the conditions subject to which Seán Kelly was released from prison.
“Subsequently, the secretary of state for Northern Ireland [Peter Hain] suspended Kelly’s licence and recalled him to prison.
“In pursuance of the suspension and recall, PSNI made arrangements to detain Kelly and return him to HMP Maghaberry,” Detective Chief Superintendent Topping said.
Along with other former political prisoners released early under the 1998 Good Friday Agreement, Seán Kelly has been prominent in north Belfast in attempting to calm interface areas.
He was arrested and reimprisoned in Maghaberry on June 18. His reimprisonment followed a sustained campaign by senior Democratic Unionist Party politicians and sections of the tabloid media.
Mr Kelly was convicted in relation to a 1993 bomb attack on west Belfast’s Shankill Road that killed ten people. His supporters argue that his conviction has been used by unionists targeting him as a “hate figure”.
His partner Geraldine Friel told Daily Ireland on Wednesday that his continued incarceration was putting his safety and welfare at risk. She said: “Seán is in a lot of danger in jail and I worry about him all the time.”
Sinn Féin representatives have raised the treatment of Mr Kelly with the British and Irish governments. The Irish government subsequently asked the British government about the case but Ms Friel has called for greater action in defence of her partner’s rights.
It emerged in a letter to Ulster Unionist Party assembly member Michael Copeland that Mr Kelly had not been under PSNI investigation for any misconduct just five days before his arrest.
Last night, a spoksperson for the campaign to free Mr Kelly told Daily Ireland that news of the Prison Service’s involvement “raises fundamental questions about Seán Kelly’s continued safety and imprisonment at the hands of the North’s prison regime”.
A Prison Service spokesperson refused to comment on the organisation’s role in Mr Kelly’s reimprisonment.






North Dublin water supply to be disrupted

RTE

01 July 2005 16:17

Tens of thousands of homes in north Dublin are being advised that they may be without water for 24 hours from 5am tomorrow.

The partial or total loss of water supply is being advised by both Dublin City Council and Fingal County Council, and is due to major upgrading work at the main reservoir at Ballycoolen.

The areas that may be without water extend from Howth, Kilbarrack, Artane and Darndale to Skerries, Swords, Balbriggan and Malahide.

Belfast shooting victim 'linked to loyalists'

BreakingNews.ie

01/07/2005 - 15:00:34

The name of the man shot dead in east Belfast this morning recently appeared in loyalist graffiti on the Shankill Road.

The man - named locally as Jameson Lockhart, from Woodburn in north Belfast - was shot at the site of a former pub once owned by a loyalist paramilitary leader in east Belfast.

Mr Lockhart's business has been attacked a number of times in the past.

He was working in a lorry on the site of the old Avenue One bar on the Newtownards Road when he was sprayed with gunfire at around 10am.

Avenue One, which is being demolished, was once owned by Jim Gray, an ousted "brigadier" in the Ulster Defence Association who is currently in prison awaiting trial on money-laundering charges.

The motive for today’s attack is unclear, but one theory is that it may be part of a feud among loyalist drug dealers.

Loyalist sources said the Ulster Volunteer Force was behind the shooting and Mr Lockhart was believed to have links to the rival Loyalist Volunteer Force.

‘Rossport Five’ vow to challenge court injunction

BreakingNews.ie

01/07/2005 - 15:46:52

The five Mayo men who were jailed for contempt vowed today to challenge a court injunction ordering them not to obstruct work on the Corrib Gas pipeline.

Their case will be based on the consent of the Minister, who their solicitor says only gave the go ahead for the pipeline to be marked out, not for its construction.

Supporters gathered outside court this afternoon for the so called "Rossport Five".

Local Fine Gael TD Michael Ring said they were left with no alternative but to fight their case through the courts: “This is a small community against big business, against the State, against the Government and against local authority."

Orangemen 'should reject talks'

BBC


Mr Saulters said he wanted the Twelfth of July to be peaceful

Orangemen should reject invitations to be a part of any process breaching Grand Lodge policy, the body's grand master has said.

Robert Saulters said such talks breached "if not the letter, certainly the spirit of the Grand Lodge policy".

His statement follows the revelation that the order's west Belfast district master took part in talks involving one of the city's most senior republicans.

The Order says it does not hold talks with residents' groups or republicans.

However, Billy Mawhinney - the most senior Orangeman on the Shankill Road - and republican Sean Murray were involved in discussions leading up to last Saturday's postponed Whiterock Parade.

In a statement on Friday, Mr Saulters said he was dismayed about the situation regarding parades in Londonderry and west Belfast.

He said he wanted to warn members that opponents would seek "to tempt them into processes which include meetings and dialogue with Sinn Fein/IRA-backed residents groups".

"We encourage all Orange brethren to be disciplined and very cautious at this time and reject advances and invitations to be a part of any process that breaches Grand Lodge policy."

This was "designed to undermine our cause and erode our human rights as enshrined in European legislation", he said.

'Intend to reapply'

Mr Saulters said he wanted the Twelfth of July celebrations to be a peaceful and enjoyable day for everyone.

"The Orange Order poses no threat to anyone; others must learn to give us the space and time to celebrate our rich heritage, in a peaceful, calm, atmosphere free from threats of violence, intimidation or attempts to deny us our civil and religious liberties," he said.

The meetings involving Mr Mawhinney were regarded as confidential and chaired by Duncan Morrow, the chief executive of the Community Relations Council.

They discussed the plans for the Whiterock Parade - including security, music, flags and the size of the march.

While progress was made - no agreement was reached.

That led to the Parades Commission's decision to re-route the march through the old Mackie's factory site.

The Orange Order said that was unacceptable and postponed the march - but they intend to reapply in order to hold it some time later this summer.



Two jailed over incendiary bomb

BBC


The incendiary bomb was left in Belfast city centre

Two men who tried to blow up a city centre car tax office, have been jailed for a total of 17 years.

Terence McCafferty, 36, from Dill House, New Lodge, Belfast, and Paul Donnelly, 26, from Colinview Street, Belfast, admitted having explosives.

They left a device, which was later defused, outside the motor tax office at Upper Queen Street in November 2002.

Donnelly was shot by a police officer as they fled. Police blamed dissident republicans for the attempted bombing.

At Belfast Crown Court on Friday, Judge Mr Justice Weir said the device, "had the potential to cause serious injury to innocent passers-by".

The would-be bombers were being watched by police and army as the bomb was driven to the tax office.

'Under surveillance'

The court heard that McCafferty was driving the stolen car containing the improvised incendiary device. Donnelly followed in another car, waiting to pick him up.

However, after the pair drove off, police intercepted them at the junction of Howard Street and Great Victoria Street and Donnelly was shot.

Sending McCafferty to jail for 12 years and ordering that Donnelly complete two years' probation after his five-year term, Mr Justice Weir said the pair were lucky not to be facing more serious charges.

"Our society has had more than sufficient experience of the misery created by terrorist activity of this type," he said.

"At a time when efforts are being made to restore normality with considerable success, had this device exploded the damage caused to that process would have been considerable," he said.

McCartney murder probe police bid to quiz man again

BreakingNews.ie

01/07/2005 - 12:21:30

Police are seeking to re-interview the co-accused of the man charged with murdering Robert McCartney outside a Belfast bar, it was revealed today.

They will make an application when James McCormick, 36, appears before Belfast Magistrates’ Court next Friday on remand, charged with the attempted murder of Brendan Devine who was injured on the night Mr McCartney was stabbed to death on January 30.

Belfast Magistrates’ Court was told of the application to be made to further interview McCormick, of Victoria Road, Stetchford, Birmingham, when he and murder accused Terence Davison, 49, appeared by video link from Maghaberry Prison today to be further remanded.

Davison, of Stanfield Place in the Markets area of Belfast, was remanded in custody for four weeks until July 29 during his 30-second appearance.

McCormick was remanded in custody until July 8 when he will appear in court in person.

Yesterday, both accused launched applications in the Northern Ireland High Court to be released on bail. The applications were adjourned until a date to be fixed.

Lithuanians petrol-bombed

Belfast Telegraph

By Michael McHugh
newsdesk@belfasttelegraph.co.uk
01 July 2005

A GROUP of Lithuanians living in Tyrone were today targeted by petrol bombers in the latest in a spate of attacks on migrant workers in the area.

A device was thrown at their home in Fairmount Park, Dungannon, shortly before 3am today and the householders, three men and a woman, were lucky to escape uninjured.

An upstairs window at the back of the house was broken and there was scorch damage to the carpet on an upstairs landing and the outside wall.

One of the men living there managed to contain the blaze, which had spread up the walls outside his bedroom, with a bucket of water and his prompt actions prevented a potentially life-threatening incident.

"I just heard the glass in the window smash and then I looked out and saw the flames," he said.

"I ran and threw some water on it and that put it out. We have been living here for over a year with no trouble at all and I don't know why anybody would want to do this."

The arsonists scaled an 8ft wall at the back of the house to launch their attack and the owner of the house, who didn't want to be named, said it was fortunate that nobody was hurt.

The incident follows a savage attack, allegedly by a group of foreign nationals, on a man in the town.

Maurice Morrow from Dungannon and South Tyrone Borough Council said there should be no retaliation.

Man shot dead at east Belfast building site

BreakingNews.ie

01/07/2005 - 11:50:05



A man has been killed in a shooting at the site of a former pub once owned by a loyalist paramilitary leader in east Belfast.

The victim was working in a lorry on the site of the old Avenue One bar on the Newtownards Road when he was sprayed with gunfire at around 10am.

He has been named locally as James Lockhart, from Woodburn in north Belfast.

Avenue One, which is being demolished, was once owned by Jim Gray, an ousted "brigadier" in the Ulster Defence Association who is currently in prison awaiting trial on money-laundering charges.

The motive for the attack is unclear, but one theory is that it may be part of a feud among loyalist drug dealers.

Loyalists accused of increasing tensions in South Belfast

Sinn Féin

Published: 30 June, 2005

Sinn Féin South Belfast MLA Alex Maskey has accused Loyalists of attempting to raise tensions in South Belfast after flags were put up in the mixed Finaghy Crossroads area and a gang of 20-25 men with pickaxe handles gathered in the Ormeau Bridge area and attempted to enter the Lower Ormeau Road area. Mr Maskey called on Unionist and community leaders to intervene to try and reduce tensions in the area.

Mr Maskey said:

"Many of theses areas throughout South Belfast are now shared spaces. Loyalist erecting flags in the area are clearly trying increase tensions.

"I am also concerned about the dangerous potential of a gang of 20-25 men gathered on the Ormeau Bridge armed with pickaxe handles who appear intent on coming into the nationalist Lower Ormeau Road area.

"This evening there are many people in the in South Belfast who are very concerned and I would urge nationalists to be extremely vigilant.

"Unionist and community leaders need to show leadership and intervene to try and reduce tensions throughout South Belfast." ENDS

Red-faced Ahern concedes wind not to blame

Irish Independent

TAOISEACH Bertie Ahern finally admitted yesterday that construction faults, and not "the wind", caused the roof of the National Aquatic Centre to come off.


Hmmm, lemme see them cracks again....

In an embarrassing climbdown, after previously claiming the wind was entirely to blame, Mr Ahern confirmed his pet project was damaged because of specific technical problems.

Amid calls for the Health and Safety Authority to investigate, he declined to comment on extensive cracks and leaks within the so-called 'Bertie Baths' at Abbotstown in west Dublin.

Blaming the centre's operators, Dublin Waterworld, for leaking reports of the damage to the building, Mr Ahern said he could not get into the matter as it was a High Court case.

After previously dismissing reports in the Irish Independent on the defects in parts of the building, Mr Ahern was forced yesterday to concede that he was wrong and described his wind comments as "witty".

The State company that owns the centre, Campus Stadium Ireland Development, now says there are specific faults and the wind should not have taken the roof off, Mr Ahern said.

"A wind of that strength, though it was strong that day, should not have taken it off," he said in an interview on 'The Last Word' on Today FM.

CSID is taking legal action against Dublin Waterworld as it claims the firm failed to repair and maintain the building properly. Dublin Waterworld says the building was defective from the beginning.

"What they [CSID] tell me is that they have been advised, as late as June 21, that there were no leaks, no cracks, no subsidences reported and CSID has requested Rohcon to investigate further the media reports," Mr Ahern said.

Fionnan Sheahan
Political Correspondent

Loyalists disrupt police meeting

BBC



A District Policing Partnership meeting in County Antrim has had to be abandoned following a protest by loyalists.

The SDLP chairman, Declan O'Loan, needed a police escort after the protesters disrupted proceedings in Clough village hall.

A group of about 50 loyalists jeered him as he tried to start the meeting.

It is believed the protest relates to remarks made by the SDLP councillor on the re-routing of parades in Ballymena.

The protesters were carrying Union flags and began singing God Save the Queen.

Councillor O'Loan insisted he was chairing the meeting and tried three times to speak, but each time the loyalists shouted sectarian abuse at him, jeered and stamped their feet.

He then announced he was adjourning the meeting.

Afterwards, Mr O'Loan said: "It was most regrettable that this incident took place.

"It is fundamental to the operation of the DPPs that political representatives hold the chair in rotation and each chair deserves to have the support of the whole community in carrying out their function."

Progressive Unionist Party member Billy McCaughey said: "Declan O'Loan is not an acceptable chairman for the DPP as far as unionism is concerned."

He added: "Our intention was to ensure he didn't chair the meeting and we are happy with the outcome."


30 June 2005

Loyalist cleared of party murder

BBC


Jonathan Stewart was shot at a house in Manor Street, Belfast

An associate of Johnny Adair has been cleared of murdering a man at a party in north Belfast during a loyalist feud more than two years ago.

Wayne Dowie, 25, formerly of Manor Street, Belfast, was found not guilty of murdering Jonathan Stewart, 22.

When the verdict was given there was uproar in the public gallery as members of Mr Stewart's family and friends tried to attack Mr Dowie in the dock.

The judge described the murder as a "calculated execution".

Mr Dowie had always denied the murder during the bloody feud between the mainstream UDA and Adair's breakaway 'C' Company.

On Thursday, Mr Justice McLaughlin said the UDA feud which claimed his life had involved two factions who both demonstrated murderous ruthlessness.

However, the judge told the Belfast court that the prosecution evidence was so weak that he could place no reliable foundation upon it.

Court uproar

He found Wayne Dowie not guilty and told him he was free to leave.

There was immediate uproar in the public gallery as Jonathan Stewart's family and friends attempted to break into the reinforced glass dock, shouting abuse and threats at Mr Dowie, who was ushered away by security officers.

There were further angry scenes in the street outside the Laganside court complex, and the police were called.

Mr Stewart's brother Jake and sister Lilian told the BBC that the family was devastated at the verdict, and they feared that it may re-ignite the feud within the UDA.

The murder was linked to a feud between elements of the UDA although Mr Stewart was not a member of any paramilitary organisation.


Board agrees to close nine bases

BBC


The closure of some rural police stations has been agreed

The Policing Board has approved some of the chief constable's planned closures of rural police stations, but postponed a decision on others.

A list of 17 PSNI stations was sent to the board by Hugh Orde for debate on Thursday.

While the board agreed to close nine stations, a decision on others in Fermanagh was deferred so consultation can take place over coming months.

The PSNI said it remained committed to Orde's recommendations.

Ulster Unionist Policing Board member Fred Cobain welcomed the decision to hold more consultation over the Fermanagh stations.

"This proposal ensures that police go back to the district policing partnerships and to elected representatives in the areas affected and engage in extensive consultations," Mr Cobain said.

"The community must be reassured about the direction of future policing strategy. I am pleased that this process will soon be underway."

Plan defended

Earlier, the proposal to close all 17 stations was defended by Security minister Shaun Woodward.

The plan had come under fire from a number of unionist politicians.

But Mr Woodward said no station was closed without extensive consultation. "We always do consultation on all of those that have been closed," he said.

"Of course, you are going to find people who will say: 'I don't care what's coming in its place, I don't care what services the police are putting in its place, I don't want that station at the end of my road to close'.

"He (Hugh Orde) is charged with the job of putting out there an efficient policing service and that's why some have to close and new ones have to open."

DUP assembly member Arlene Foster said the move would have a detrimental effect on policing in Fermanagh.

"I'm concerned about response times," she said.

"I'm concerned about the fact that Fermanagh is a very rural community and they need policemen on the ground at those stations and especially along the border," she said.


Shaun Woodward said resources had to be managed in the best way

Orde's recommendations were put forward after the chief constable reviewed more than 60 police stations in which there was consultation at local level.

Eight of the 17 stations have already been run down and almost half of the locations on the list are in Fermanagh and include Rosslea and Kinawley.

Some of the other stations are Castlerock, Ardglass, Moy and Dromore in County Tyrone.

The others are understood to be Moneymore, Castlewellan, Plumbridge, Ballygawley, Caledon, Ballnamallard, Derrygonelly, Irvinestown, Lisbellaw, Newtownbutler and Tempo.


PSNI behaviour condemned

Daily Ireland

by Ciarán Barnes
c.barnes@dailyireland.com

The Police Ombudsman has been asked to investigate the conduct of PSNI members who patrolled a controversial Orange Order march in Ballymena.
On Monday night, three nationalists in the Co Antrim market town were arrested during a march involving 450 loyalists and 13 bands.
Those arrested have been accused of committing public order offences, but, according to Sinn Féin, all they were doing was monitoring the parade.
The arrests took place after the Orange Order marched through the predominantly nationalist Market Road and Broughshane Street.
There were no protests, although some locals did attempt to record the parade on camcorder in case there was any breaches of Parades Commission guidelines.
At previous loyalist parades in Ballymena paramilitary flags have been displayed and sectarian tunes have been played.
Locals were prevented from filming by the PSNI and a short time later three nationalists were arrested.
North Antrim Sinn Féin Assemblyman Philip McGuigan has complained to the Police Ombudsman about the behaviour of the PSNI.
He insisted they were heavy-handed and blatantly partisan in their treatment of nationalist residents.
Mr McGuigan said: “It is obvious from the partisan treatment handed out to the nationalist and republican community of Ballymena that the PSNI here operates in a sectarian manner.
“They don’t even try and cover up this fact,” he said.
“I will be contacting the Police Ombudsman regarding this operation in Ballymena.
“I will also be contacting the Irish government as Bertie Ahern’s government have an obligation to protect the rights of Northern nationalists.
“I intend to make sure that he fulfils his obligations.”
Mr McGuigan said he will ask the Irish government to send representatives to monitor future parades in Ballymena and to investigate alleged abusive patterns of policing.
SDLP Assemblyman, Sean Farren, and local councillor Declan O’Loan, said they had “grave concerns” about how the parade was policed.
They said questions have to be asked about the way nationalists were handled by the police.
“We are very concerned about the conduct of policing of the parade and the protest," Mr O'Loan said.
“They prevented pedestrians walking along the street, and questioned people, including public representatives, as to who they were and their reasons for being there, as if assuming they were trouble-makers."
The SDLP said the incident would be raised at a public session of the Policing Board on Thursday.
Ballymena Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) councillor Roy Gillespie, who took part in Monday night’s parade, claimed nationalists objecting to loyalist parades in the town were “anti-Protestant and anti-God”.
“Republicans start all the trouble,” said the Orangeman.
“They should be locked up because they want to disrupt every parade in Ballymena and attack the police.
“All the songs the Orangemen played were gospel tunes.
“Republicans had better learn them if they want to get to heaven.
“They can have no objection to decent, hard-working Protestants walking the Queen’s highway,” added Mr Gillespie.
Referring to Mr McGuigan’s complaints, a spokesperson for the PSNI said it could not comment because the matter had been referred to the Police Ombudsman.






Smiling Abigail: 'I feel incredibly blessed'

Telegraph

30/06/2005

New photos of Abigail Witchalls, who was paralysed after a stabbing in April, show signs of the recovery which has given hope to her family and amazed her doctors.

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Abigail Witchalls with her occupational therapist

The pictures show her working with Emma Linley, her occupational therapist, on improving the movement which is slowly returning to all of her limbs - particularly her right hand.

Mrs Witchalls, who is being treated at the Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital in Stanmore, said: "I'm exited by every bit of progress and happy to be able to spend more time with Joseph. I'm in good hands and feel incredibly blessed."

The 26-year-old, who is pregnant with her second child, can now lift her right arm a small amount and is able to move the fingers in her right hand.

She can even sit up in a wheelchair for most of the day, is able to speak softly and has begun to eat small amounts of pureed food.

Such a recovery seemed unlikely after Mrs Witchalls was stabbed in the neck in front of her 23-month-old son Joseph as she pushed his buggy down a quiet country lane in her home village of Little Bookham, Surrey.

She was considered likely to die, or be permanently paralysed, when she first arrived in hospital after the attack on April 20.

Her husband, Benoit added: "Members of the family spend time with Abigail every day.

"We all enjoy sharing her sense of achievement in her progress, and her positive attitude to her continuing serious disability. We are looking forward to the time when she will be able to resume family life with us all."

The hospital confirmed that scans at seven and 11 weeks showed Abigail's pregnancy was "progressing normally".

Police are still "one or two weeks away" from passing a file to the Crown Prosecution Service putting forward a man who killed himself as a suspect for the brutal stabbing.

Richard Cazaly, 23, died in Edinburgh, apparently from an overdose, after fleeing Little Bookham, Surrey. Police are hoping to talk to Abigail again soon and show her pictures of cars, in a bid to identify to her attacker's vehicle.

First wheel turns for determined gaelscoil

Daily Ireland

By Jarlath Kearney
j.kearney@dailyireland.com

A Derry primary school will today celebrate “a major milestone” with the departure of its first batch of students.
A handful of children, who were the first to attend Gaelscoil Éadáin Mhóir in 1998, today graduate as the school’s first primary seven class.
The gaelscoil is Derry’s second Irish-medium primary school.
Founded with just six pupils, the gaelscoil has grown dramatically and attendance in the coming academic year will top 130 students.
In total, over 300 young people are now being educated through Irish-medium education at primary school level in Derry city.
Risteard Mac Dabhéid, the gaelscoil’s vice-principal, hailed the moment as “a major milestone”.
“It’s a ringing endorsement for Irish-medium education,” Mr Mac Dabhéid told Daily Ireland.
“The fact that these children are now solid bilingual speakers means they are on a par with 70 per cent of the world’s population in being able to speak two languages.
“That alone will open doors that would possibly be closed through other mediums of education.
“With the enrichment of Irish has come the opportunity to develop and possibly secure employment in the future utilising bilingualism. And with the children now moving on, they have a very solid foundation for developing Spanish – the third language thay have been learning,” Mr Mac Dabhéid said.
With the gaelscoil placing a heavy emphasis on “the quality of education provided”, Mr Mac Dabhéid said that an equally important factor is the gaelscoil being anchored in the heart of the Bogside and Brandywell community.
“This school started with just six children in one mobile classroom beside Seán Dolan’s GAA club in 1998.
“In 2002, the school completed the permanent move to the Gasyard community complex and received formal recognition from then Education Minister Martin McGuinness.
“The gaelscoil’s success is undoubtedly its close bond with the community in which it exists, through the support of parents, teachers, local representatives, community organisations, but most of all through the contribution of the children in attendance,” Mr Mac Dabhéid said.
Meanwhile Sinn Féin president Gerry Adams has applauded the decision of direct rule Education Minister Angela Smith to grant formal recognition to Gaelscoil na Lonnain in west Belfast.
After raising the issue on a number of occasions with Ms Smith, the West Belfast MP welcomed news that the gaelscoil will now have secure funding for the next three years.
“This Irish-medium primary school has been playing a vital role in the life of the lower Falls community on a shoestring budget.
“The fact that Gaelscoil an Lonnain will now receive support from the Department of Education is the good news which parents, children and staff in this school have been waiting to hear,” Mr Adams said.






Fears over loyalist parade

Daily Ireland

by Ciarán Barnes
c.barnes@dailyireland.com

Loyalists in a quiet Co Antrim village are planning to march around a religiously mixed cul-de-sac despite opposition from local Catholics and Protestants.
The Pride of the Village Flute Band have filed an application with the Parades Commission to march around Stoneyford on July 11.
The route they plan to take will see them parade around a new housing development that was the scene of sectarian violence last year.
Nationalists who publicly opposed a loyalist parade around the Beeches Manor cul-de-sac last summer were forced to flee the area after receiving death threats. There are fears that these threats could be repeated after next month’s march.
The late-night parade will culminate with around 60 loyalists and one band walking to a bonfire in the village and then setting fire to the bonfire.
There were reports last year of men taking part in the march wearing T-shirts bearing the emblem of the Orange Volunteers, a small loyalist paramilitary outfit.
Local Sinn Féin councillor Paul Butler described the new Stoneyford parade plans as “ridiculous”.
He said: “No one in the Beeches Manor area wants this parade passing by their homes.
“This is a quiet and religiously mixed area. After last year’s trouble, residents just want to live in peace.
“They don’t want loyalist band parades stoking up sectarian tension.”
Ed Nolan was one of the Stoneyford Catholics forced to flee the village after loyalist threats last summer.
He said his home had been attacked eight times in three months before he moved back to Belfast.
He said: “When we moved in, there was a brand new lamppost at the end of the street which was painted red, white and blue.
“The next day, someone repainted it white but, the day after that, it was painted red, white and blue again. It was afterwards that all the trouble started.”
Mr Nolan said that, as well as smashing the windows of his home, loyalists loosened the wheel bolts on his car.
“Perhaps the most sinister thing was that a car came in cruising around the area one night before sitting across the street from my house.
“When I went out into the darkened hall, I heard them shouting something about ‘fenians’ before speeding off.”
The Parades Commission will rule before the end of the week on whether the Stoneyford march can go ahead as planned.
Several other controversial parades are planned for the village during the summer.
In 1999, Stoneyford featured heavily in the news when intelligence documents on 300 nationalists were found in the local Orange Hall.
Republicans claimed that the documents were being used by the Orange Volunteers and had been leaked to the group by the RUC.






Ahern sidesteps inquiry call

Daily Ireland

By Jarlath Kearney
j.kearney@dailyireland.com

Foreign minister Dermot Ahern yesterday declined to support the campaign for a full independent inquiry into the 1991 murder of Donegal councillor Eddie Fullerton.
The Sinn Féin councillor was assassinated by loyalist paramilitaries.
His case has raised serious questions about collusion and cover-up by authorities on both sides of the Border.
Mr Ahern was speaking in Belfast yesterday during a day-long series of meetings. The minister was accompanied by senior officials. His schedule included engagements with the SDLP, the PSNI and The Irish News.
He also met representatives of the Ulster Unionist Party and of the Policing Board, as well as Police Ombudsman Nuala O’Loan.
Asked whether he supported the Fullerton family’s campaign, Mr Ahern responded: “I have heard Minister [Michael] McDowell in relation to this. If he, for one minute, believes that there is need for any investigation, he will put that in place. I would agree with Minister McDowell.”
Mr Ahern’s failure to publicly back the Fullerton family contrasts with the unanimous support of every political party on Donegal County Council in calling for a full independent inquiry.
Addressing reporters, Mr Ahern said an expected IRA statement should come as soon as possible but that the outstanding elements of the Good Friday Agreement would continue to be implemented.
“As I said previously, the sooner they [the IRA] make their decision, the better for all of us so that we can get on with real politics and bring benefit to all our peoples on both sides of the Border,” he said.
“That’s why the British and Irish governments met last Monday. That’s why I’m here today. That’s why there will be a continuation of movement right across all the areas of the Agreement that we can deal with.
“We are prepared to move forward with the British government and the other political parties in the North to bring benefit to the people of Ireland,” Mr Ahern said.
Praising the announcement of a deal on this year’s July 12 march in Derry city, Mr Ahern said the Irish government was “delighted with the decision”.
“Obviously we have to keep in very close contact with the parties on the ground.
“Ultimately, dialogue is absolutely important but, equally so, adherence to the Parades Commission – putting in place the necessary police arrangements to ensure that the determinations of the Parades Commission are adhered to – and we just hope and pray that the good grace and the understanding that was developed in Derry will continue over the next two weeks,” Mr Ahern said.
After meeting Mr Ahern, the new Ulster Unionist Party leader Reg Empey described the talks as “constructive”.
Mr Empey said any IRA statement would be judged against the organisation’s actions.






Kelly’s partner demands action

Daily Ireland

by Ciarán Barnes
c.barnes@dailyireland.com

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The heavily pregnant partner of jailed Belfast republican Seán Kelly has hit out at the Irish government for not doing enough to get the father of her children released.
Speaking to Daily Ireland, mother of three Geraldine Friel, who is expecting her fourth child in October, called on Taoiseach Bertie Ahern to put “real pressure” on the British government to secure the 33-year-old’s release.
Mr Kelly was sentenced to nine life sentences for his role in the IRA’s 1993 Shankill bombing, which claimed ten lives.
He was released in 2000 under the terms of the Good Friday Agreement but was returned to prison on June 18 this year.
Secretary of state Peter Hain, relying on intelligence provided to him by Britain’s Special Branch, has claimed that Mr Kelly reinvolved himself with paramilitarism.
The minister refused to elaborate on how the north Belfast man had breached his terms of release. This prompted the Taoiseach to call on his own officials to provide him with this information.
Irish senators Martin Mansergh and Maurice Hayes have also questioned the motives behind Mr Kelly’s return to jail.
However, Ms Friel said the Irish politicians could be doing much more to bring her partner home.
“I feel let down by the Irish government,” she said.
“They have not done enough to get Seán out of jail or find out why he was sent back there.
“They should be putting more pressure on the British government and demanding answers.”
Mr Kelly had only been in Maghaberry prison for four days when he was threatened by a loyalist inmate.
The mother of his children says she fears for his life inside.
“Seán is in a lot of danger in jail and I worry about him all the time,” said Ms Friel.
“The children are very scared. I let my nine-year-old know almost immediately that he had been jailed but I didn’t tell my five and three-year-olds for a couple of days. I pretended to them that he had gone on holiday.
“It was tough breaking the news to them, one of the hardest things that I have done.”
Ms Friel said she believed there had been a focused attempt to keep Mr Kelly from speaking to or seeing his family.
“Seán has been in jail for 12 days now and, in that time, I have seen him once and had just two telephone calls.
“The kids haven’t seen him at all. It’s as if the authorities don’t want him to get in touch with his family,” she said.
The arrest of Mr Kelly has led many republicans and former IRA prisoners to reconsider the role they have played in trying to prevent clashes in Belfast’s interface areas.
Mr Kelly played a key role in keeping the Ardoyne area of north Belfast calm while Orange parades passed nationalist homes. Now there is a fear among republicans that his arrest may not be the only one, something that his partner also recognises.
“Seán, like everyone else working on the interfaces in north Belfast, was trying to keep things quiet,” said Ms Friel.
“I know him better than anyone and, since he got out of jail, he has not been involved in any paramilitary activity, no matter what the British government says.
“All he has been doing is working for the benefit of his community and he has been sent to jail for trying to keep things peaceful.”






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