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21 January 2010 Edition

Disaster waiting to happen

21 January 2010

In the latter half of 2003 Jean Bertrand Aristide - then president of Haiti - sent the French government a bill for $21,685,135,571.48. Down to the last cent, the sum was the modern equivalent of the $150 million in reparations France had imposed on the country after its 'slave army' defeated French forces and declared independence on 1 January 1804. However, while it may have been based on the 'French ransom', it was in reality a bill for the immiseration and systematic pillage of the first independent nation in Latin America, the world's oldest black republic and the second oldest republic in the western hemisphere, after the United States. Free article

Banking on an inquiry that pays off for the public

21 January 2010

IN a stark reminder of how today's news can become tomorrow's fish-shop wrapping paper, the resumption of the Dáil this week was dominated not by debate on the recently passed Budget but by calls for an inquiry into the banking crisis. To be fair, nothing moves that fast in the Irish economy. The financial sector has been in a state of delayed meltdown since summer 2008 but it is only now in 2010 that we are even talking about an inquiry into the banking debacle. The failure to deal with the details of what was described as one of the most savage Budgets of all time is a reflection of how expansive and deep the economic problems of this state are (and Fine Gael and Labour probably don't want to say much more on a Budget that they would have implemented themselves, if not worse, given half the chance). Free article

Media agenda does victims disservice

21 January 2010

The women who have recently spoken out about abuse they suffered in their childhood or adolescence acted courageously and deserve to be fully supported as they seek justice and closure. Sections of the media, however, have sought to use these allegations to demonise republican communities in the North, and Sinn Féin and Gerry Adams in particular, by claiming that there was a culture of 'cover-up' in cases of abuse and rape that was sanctioned by republican leaders. Free article

Sinn Féin clarifies position regarding Liam Adams

21 January 2010

The following statements, issued by Sinn Féin leaders from January 15 to January 18, state for the record the situation regarding Liam Adams' membership of the party and challenge the version of events and other allegations made by The Sunday Tribune. Free article

Tribune challenged by victim and republicans over sex abuse story

21 January 2010

The following series of statements was issued through Madden & Finucane Solicitors in Belfast in response to a story by Suzanne Breen, carried on the front page of the 17 January issue of The Sunday Tribune, concerning two cases of abuse in Belfast. Free article

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Intense negotiations at Stormont

21 January 2010

Intense and comprehensive negotiations between Sinn Féin and the DUP began in earnest last Thursday. Sinn Féin's team included Gerry Adams and Martin McGuinness, Conor Murphy and Michelle Gildernew. Adams confirmed Sinn Féin leaders had cleared their diaries to facilitate talks. "We are here to do business," Adams told the media. Earlier, Sinn Féin had postponed a crunch meeting with the party's ruling body pending "a definitive report about the current discussions". Free article

Details emerge of Budget 2010's brutal education cuts

21 January 2010

Budget 2010 saw yet another attack on one of our most vital public services, education, and in so doing has again foisted most of the burden on disadvantaged and vulnerable students. This is not the first time such a savage budget was imposed on the education sector, with previous budgets resulting in higher class sizes, increased third-level registration fees, axing of special needs classes and cuts to schools in the most disadvantaged areas in the 26 Counties. Free article

Timeframe and facts in relation to recent allegations against a Sinn Féin public representative

21 January 2010

In March 2009 the National Party Chair was made aware of speculation concerning allegations of abuse against a Sinn Féin member in Belfast. Party officers in Belfast were made aware that allegations of abuse were being made about a Sinn Féin public representative. The Party officers arranged to meet with the member. At that meeting the member confirmed that an interview with the PSNI in relation to allegations of abuse had taken place. Free article


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