26 February 2004 Edition
SDLP slammed over CS gas
Sinn Féin spokesperson on Human Rights Issues Caitríona Ruane has accused the SDLP of 'arming the PSNI with weapons of repression'. Ruane's comments come after the SDLP supported the issuing of CS gas to the PSNI.
"Anybody with a passing knowledge of human rights and civil liberties will well know that arming the PSNI with yet another means of repression is a recipe for disaster," the South Down MLA said.
"Since the SDLP joined the Policing Board the PSNI have begun using an even more lethal plastic bullet, they continue to operate under repressive legislation and now they are being issued with CS gas canisters.
"The defence of CS gas by the former SDLP Assembly member and current Policing Board incumbent Joe Byrne was a disgrace. Nationalists across the Six Counties know only too well the results of the use of this lethel weapon in the past by the RUC and will be angered by the SDLP endorsement of it as an acceptable part of current policing arrangements."