13 October 2005 Edition

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Omagh venue for Demilitarisation Weekend

Ógra protest calls for demilitarisation

Ógra protest calls for demilitarisation

A major conference on Demilitarisation will be held in Omagh, County Tyrone next weekend, 21-23 October.

The National Demilitarisa-tion Weekend organised by Ógra Shinn Féin focuses on British Army Demilitarisation, seeking to develop a plan of action to deal with outstanding issues.

This is the fourth such conference held in Omagh in recent years. The conference in 2004 was attended by comrades from England, Scotland, USA, Catalonia, Galicia, the Basque Country and by Ógra activists and republicans from all over Ireland.

Last year's conference took place just weeks following the launch of local community group, Omagh Residents Demilitarisation Committee (ORDC), which has since been actively campaigning, holding numerous protests, public awareness events and a presentation to Omagh District Council. The latter consisted of a proposal to demilitarise Lisanelly British Army Barracks and ways in which the occupied land could be utilised by the people of Omagh.

Omagh District Council subsequently passed a motion supporting the proposals of the Committee. Lisanelly British Army Barrack's now looks set to be vacated by the remaining British troops in August 2006.

Ógra Shinn Féin Organiser Barry McColgan said: "There is no doubt that the demilitarisation of Lisanelly Brit Camp is a result of the Demilitarisation Conferences and the constant campaigning work of Ógra Shinn Féin and more recently the Omagh Residents Demilitarisation Committee."

This years weekend features talks, discussions, protests, video showings, workshops, a republican function with the Irish Brigade and much more.

The conference will be addressed by Councillor Martin McColgan of Omagh Residents Demilitarisation Committee, Former Sinn Féin Director of Publicity Danny Morrison, Belfast republican Jim 'Flash' McVeigh and will include a video showing and lecture about the life and legacy of Ché Guevara.

Speaking to An Phoblacht Barry McColgan said: "Demilitarisation is a massive outstanding issue which must now be resolved. Republicans have played their part in ensuring the gun is taken out of Irish politics. The onus now clearly lies with the British Government to live up to its commitments in the Good Friday Agreement and to dismantle its war machine in Ireland. I would urge people to turn out in numbers. Have your say in the national strategy and let us send a clear message to the British Government -- Demilitarise Now!"

o For further details contact Omagh Sinn Féin on 028 82 25 30 40.

An Phoblacht
44 Parnell Sq.
Dublin 1

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