22 June 2006 Edition

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In Brief

Milne elected Magherafelt Chairperson

Sinn Féin MP for Mid-Ulster Martin McGuinness extended good wishes to party colleague Ian Milne who was elected Chairperson of Magherafelt District Council last. McGuinness said Milne was a hugely respected republican within South Derry and beyond and that his election was a recognition of the service Milne has given his community over many years.

Ian Milne has called for a unified approach from the council in relation to the issues affecting the people of South Derry.

Graveyard vandalism slammed

Sinn Féin Councillor Paul Butler has hit out at those who vandalised a Church of Ireland graveyard in Glenavy. Butler said he wanted to send a message of sympathy to the Church of Ireland in Glenavy, and in particular the Rev John Rutter, who has worked hard over the last couple of years to try and stop such incidents.

McGuinness welcomes FIFA decision

Sinn Féin MP Martin McGuinness has welcomed news that FIFA is to recognise the unique constitutional position regarding the Six Counties and withdraw its demand that people wishing to play for IFA teams hold British passports.

"When this issue first became an obvious problem I made representations to the Department of Foreign Affairs in Dublin seeking that they intervene with FIFA to see the ridiculous ruling regarding British passports was overturned', McGuinness said.

EU bulletin to be launched

Sinn Féin's European Department has announced a new initiative to update and brief MEPs, European officials, European Government representatives and NGOs on the political situation in Ireland.

The online bulletin will be produced regularly and sent to various organisations across Europe. The first edition will highlight issues such as the peace process, the murder of Michael McIlveen in Ballymena and recent revelations regarding British state collusion.

Cairde Shinn Féin Belfast launch

Hundreds of people attended the official launch of Cairde Sinn Féin Béal Feirste in Belfast's Europa Hotel on Friday 16 June. West Belfast MP and Sinn Fein President Gerry Adams addressed as did Sinn Féin Mayor of Kerry Toiréasa Ferris.

Cairde Sinn Féin board members include Jane Adams, Dermot Kennedy, Harry Thompson, Seán McKnight and current manager of the Antrim Senior Football team and former H-Block prisoner Michael Culbert.

Cairde's aim is that all monies raised will be used exclusively for political activities to promote and advance Sinn Fein.

From Belfast to Balyconnell

The republicans pictured above recently cycled from Belfast via Armagh, Monaghan, Clones, Belturbet and on to the Kieran Doherty monument in Ballyconnell.

The cycle commemorated the 25th Anniversary of the election to the Dáil of Kieran Doherty on 11 June 1981.

British challenged on discrimination

Sinn Féin has compiled a report to coincide with Lisburn Council's AGM on Thursday 22 June, which exposes unionist unwillingness to share power with nationalists since local government in the North was 'reformed' in 1972.

Councillor Paul Butler said "This report will not only illustrate how far political unionism has to travel to embrace equality and power sharing, but, just as importantly, why the British Government must ensure that any new local government framework embeds power sharing".

The report lists recommendations, including a legally enforceable code of conduct.

Galliagh residents demand support

Residents of Derry's Galliagh estate held a protest, on Thursday 15 June, outside the headquarters of Derry City council demanding investment to tackle anti-social behaviour in the area.

The protest came days after a rally supporting former H-Block prisoner Seamus Brown, viciously assaulted in the area on 9 June.

Former Sinn Féin mayors of Derry Lynn Fleming, Cathal Crumley as well as Foyle MLA Raymond McCartney joined residents to deliver a letter to the Town Clerk demanding new facilities for the Greater Shantallow area.

Anti-death driving murals launched

Tuesday, 13 June saw the launch, across Belfast, of hard hitting anti-car crime murals.

Ten-year-old Tyler Watson, seriously injured by death drivers when his parents, Charmaine and Justin, were killled in a smash in 1999 unveiled the murals located at Upper Springfield Road, Shankill Road and Duncairn Avenue.

The murals depict Tyler as he lay in hospital close to death.

The murals were commissioned by Families Bereaved Through Car Crime, (FBTCC), in partnership with West Belfast based youth groups and were painted by West Belfast artist Frank Quigley, whose son Rossa was killed by death drivers in 2003.

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