21 May 2009 Edition

THE LOCAL ELECTIONS: Southern stars

21 May 2009

THE 1997 Leinster House elections showed in just one small constituency the potency and potential of the Sinn Féin vote. Coming from a standing start, Sinn Féin's Martin Ferris took nearly 16% of the first preferences with 5,691 votes. In 2002, Ferris topped this performance by taking a seat from Labour Party former leader Dick Spring. In the years before and since the 2002 breakthrough, there has been consistent growth in the Sinn Féin vote particularly in Cork, Kerry and Waterford, where in the last 15 years the party vote has grown election on election. Now, in 2009, we can expect more breakthroughs in like areas Tipperary and where Sinn Féin is fielding an ever-growing slate of candidates. Free article

Christy Burke a fearless voice for Dublin Central, says Adams

21 May 2009

CHRISTY BURKE is a fearless voice, one of the hardest-working councillors and worthy of being the TD for Dublin Central, Gerry Adams said during a canvass in the constituency at the weekend. The Sinn Féin President reminded voters that Christy Burke was jailed in the 1980s for his defence of Moore Street traders along with the late Tony Gregory TD, whose death caused the by-election. Adams said the Government wants to make ordinary people pay the price for their destruction of the economy and that Fine Gael - being tipped by the media to take the seat in a backlash against Fianna Fáil - offers no real alternative. Free article

Special showing of H-Block film 'Hunger' in London

21 May 2009

A SPECIAL screening of Steve McQueen's award-winning film Hunger at a London cinema on Sunday drew a large audience to see the film and ask questions of one of the central characters in the H-Block prison struggle, Brendan 'Bik' McFarlane. Opening the discussion at London's Phoenix Cinema, Bik praised Steve McQueen's film which he said invoked "incredible emotions". He described Michael Fassbender's performance as Bobby Sands as "outstanding". Free article

Government let SR Technics be destroyed

21 May 2009

THE Fianna Fáil/Green Government must be held responsible for the loss of jobs at SR Technics, having failed to support viable plans or to take the operation into state ownership, Dublin Sinn Féin TD Aengus Ó Snodaigh said this week. Deputy Ó Snodaigh said the loss of 1,200 jobs at SR Technics is a "devastating blow" to the Dublin region and to the Irish economy and the Government have allowed a viable, strategic and world-class Irish industry to be destroyed by "multinational vultures". Free article

McIlveen murder - lenient sentencing to be challenged

21 May 2009

THE leniency of sentencing handed down to four men convicted of the sectarian murder of Catholic schoolboy Michael McIlveen was discussed at a recent meeting of the Policing Board. The 15-year-old Ballymena schoolboy died after being beaten by a unionist gang in May 2006. Four men have been convicted but the trial judge ruled that even the longest sentenced could be considered for release after 13 years. Free article

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Hamill Inquiry - RUC officer denies suspect tip-off

21 May 2009

ONE of the four RUC officers at the scene during a brutal sectarian attack in which Portadown Catholic Robert Hamill was fatally injured denied at the Hamill Inquiry last week that he had tipped-off one of the loyalist murder suspects. Robert Hamill was walking home with a friend and two female cousins when they were attacked by a sectarian mob in April 1997. An RUC Land Rover was parked just a few feet away but four armed officers in the vehicle ignored desperate pleas to intervene. The 25-year-old Catholic father of two died of his injuries 11 days later. Free article

Omagh bombing - RUC refused to testify

21 May 2009

A MEMBER of the RUC investigating team and another Special Branch officer refused to co-operate with an inquiry concerning the 1998 Omagh bombing, a committee of Westminster MPs has heard from the inquiry chief, Sir Peter Gibson. The inquiry was established after a BBC Panorama programme claimed that Britain's Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ) - the Intelligence services' eavesdropping spy centre - had intercepted and was listening to mobile telephone conversations used to co-ordinate the attack by the bombers. The programme-makers suggested the information could have been acted upon to thwart the bombing and save the lives of the 29 people subsequently killed, including a woman pregnant with twins. Free article

Shankill Butcher under investigation found dead

21 May 2009

A RINGLEADER in the notorious Shankill Butchers loyalist sectarian murder gang has been found dead in his north Belfast home. William Moore was due to be questioned by the PSNI's Historical Enquiries Team about the murder of a west Belfast man in January 1974. Free article

Loyalist gangster Shoukri fined £1

21 May 2009

NORTH BELFAST Sinn Féin MLA Gerry Kelly has described the £1 fine imposed by Belfast High Court on former UDA leader Andre Shoukri last week as "beyond belief". Shoukri, renowned for his life of crime and the lavish lifestyle it funded, is currently serving a nine-year sentence for the extortion and blackmail of a north Belfast bar owner. Free article

Adams attends Palestine Solidarity AGM in Dublin

21 May 2009

THE Ireland Palestine Solidarity Campaign's AGM in Dublin last Sunday was attended by Sinn Féin President Gerry Adams, recently returned from a fact-finding visit to Gaza, the West Bank and Israel. One of the speakers at the AGM was Independent Leftist PLO Executive member As'as Abdul Rahman, whom the Sinn Féin leader met in Palestine only weeks ago. Free article


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