30 April 2009 Edition

Economic crisis must force a rethink of EU strategy - de Brún

30 April 2009

THE needs of ordinary people struggling in the current economic crisis must be central to a reformed EU economic strategy, Sinn Féin MEP Bairbre de Brún has declared. Addressing community and voluntary activists on Tuesday, de Brún also reiterated Sinn Féin's support for that sector. "In my time as an MEP I have sought through a programme of direct engagement with local businesses, chambers of commerce, community organisations, NGOs, environmental groups, trade unionists and rural communities to bring the workings of Europe to local people," she commented. Free article

Harney's promises on cancer care 'have no credibility'

30 April 2009

SINN FÉIN Health Spokesperson Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin has described as without credibility the latest promises from Health Minister Mary Harney over reductions in waiting lists for cancer tests and treatments. The Cavan-Monaghan Deputy said: "In response to the latest negative reports on cancer service in this State Health Minister Mary Harney has made more promises. She states that waiting lists for cancer tests and treatments will be reduced in the months ahead. The Minister's promises have no credibility. Free article

Social welfare cutbacks 'target most vulnerable'

30 April 2009

SPEAKING after the resumption of the Dáil last week Sinn Féin Social and Family Affairs spokesperson Arthur Morgan TD said the recent emergency budget is another example of the Government targeting the most vulnerable sections of society. "The Government's claim that the cut in rent supplements will not affect tenants because of falling rent is untrue. Rents in urban areas such as Dublin have not fallen according to groups such as Threshold", he said. Free article

Markets hoax device condemned

30 April 2009

SOUTH Belfast Sinn Féin MLA Alex Maskey has said that the hoax device left in the Markets area of South Belfast on the morning of Thursday, 23 April only served to cause hardship to the local population. Alex Maskey MLA said: "The disruption caused by this hoax device serves no purpose other than to disrupt the lives of the local population and shows a total disregard for the local community. Free article

Catholic Church leaders meet loyalists

30 April 2009

Senior Catholic clerics met with loyalist representatives last week in what has been heralded as a "ground breaking" initiative. Head of the Catholic Church in Ireland, Cardinal Sean Brady, together with Bishops Noel Treanor and Gerard Clifford, met representatives of the UDA linked Ulster Political Research Group. Free article

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Basque youth activist to fight extradition from Belfast

30 April 2009

BASQUE activist Arturo Villanueva Arteaga (32), who has lived in west Belfast for four years, was arrested in a raid on 21 April under a European warrant issued by the Spanish authorities who are seeking his extradition to Spain on "terrorism" charges. Villanueva, who is well-known in the west Belfast community and has been running a tourism business providing tours to European tourists, has said he will fight the extradition attempt. He was released on bail under conditions of reporting to police daily and living under a 9pm curfew, with the extradition hearing to begin on May 13. Free article

Concern at weakness of health care system in face of swine flu threat

30 April 2009

Sinn Féin Health spokesperson Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin has called on the Minister for Health & Children Mary Harney to act urgently to ensure that the primary care system can cope with the threat of a swine flu pandemic. Following a briefing given by the Department of Health & Children to Dáil health spokespersons last Tuesday, Deputy Ó Caoláin said: "It is clear from this afternoon's briefing that the Department of Health & Children and the HSE are advancing their precautions and preparations for a possible swine flu pandemic." Free article

'Illegal' Shell nets in Glengad removed

30 April 2009

ABOUT 150 local people gathered at Glengad on Sunday 26 April, the site where the controversial proposed Shell gas pipeline is to make landfall, to take down what they said were illegal nets. The locals were already angry over what they described as a vicious assault on local man and anti Shell protestor Willie Corduff on the previous Wednesday night. Corduff is one one of five local men jailed in June 2005 for contempt of court after refusing to obey a temporary court injunction forbidding them to interfere with work being undertaken by Shell their land. Free article

Workplace deaths far exceed official figures

30 April 2009

SIPTU Safety and Health Advisor Sylvester Cronin has warned newly-appointed 26-County Junior Minister for Labour Affairs Dara Calleary that the area of occupational health and safety presents an immense challenge if workers are to be inadequately protected. Cronin also welcomed the initiative being taken by the Irish Congress of Trade Unions in organising a conference this week to consider the Corporate Killing Report published by the Law Reform Commission in 2005. "The union fully supports its recommendations," he said. Free article

Hain fails to overturn court ruling on unlawful appointment

30 April 2009

AN appeal by the former British Secretary of State in the North Peter Hain MP to overturn a High Court ruling that the appointment of Bertha McDougall as an 'Interim' Victims Commissioner, that he made during his time as Secretary of State, was unlawful failed in Belfast's Court of Appeal on Tuesday. In 2006 the British Attorney General announced an investigation to find out if Hain or his NIO officials misled the Belfast High Court. The case was referred to the Attorney General by presiding High Court Judge Girvan who accused Hain and top NIO officials of attempting to pervert the course of justice. Free article


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