30 May 2006

Spy claims nonsense - McGuinness


Martin McGuinness described British agent claims as "hooey"

Sinn Fein's Martin McGuinness has rubbished a claim in a Sunday tabloid that he was a British spy.

Speaking at Stormont for the first time since the allegation, Mr McGuinness said it was "a load of hooey" and "total nonsense".

The allegation was made by a former intelligence officer who uses the pseudonym Martin Ingram.

However, Mr McGuinness said he believed that elements of the DUP were behind the claims.

He claimed the motive was to try to undermine attempts to restore power-sharing.

Mr McGuinness said that DUP MP William McCrea made a similar claim in the House of Commons in Feburary which was "widely ignored".

Asked if he was 100% no evidence to support the claim would ever be produced, he said he was 1,000,000% confident.

"I have worked all of my adult life as an Irish republican. Many of my comrades have been killed and I of course knew many of them.

"So under no circumstances will I ever be concerned about anybody throwing anything up at me which will stick against me."

The DUP's Gregory Campbell said his party had nothing to gain from the claims against Mr McGuinness.

He said his party was opposed to the republican movement as a result of its "illegal and criminal" activities and whether or not senior members were agents was irrelevant.

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