10 November 2005 Edition

Resize: A A A Print

News in brief

Collusion families spied on

Members of the anti-collusion group An Fhirinne were filmed as they picketed the headquarters of the Policing Board on Thursday 3 November.

Sharon Pickering of An Firinne called on the Policing Board to come clean and say if they sanctioned or were involved in the incident.

An Fhirinne members, including relatives of people killed by loyalists in collusion with crown forces, spotted a man with a video recorder at the window across from the Policing Board's headquarters in Belfast's Harbour area (pictured above).

"We want to know who this man is and if he was taping our picket with the authority of the Policing Board or the PSNI. This incident raises the spectre of ongoing intelligence gathering by the very people who stand accused of colluding in the deaths of hundreds of nationalists."

Pickering went on to say that Thursday's picket was organised to highlight collusion and the RUC's handling of cases involving the deaths of nationalists.

Meanwhile, Sinn Féin Councillor Paul Maskey accused the PSNI of being involved in, "an intelligence gathering operation in West Belfast last weekend".

The PSNI had surveillance cameras, mounted on top of landrovers as they passed young people in the Finaghy and Andersonstown areas of the city.

Call on Poyntzpass killers embarrasses DUP

A former unionist paramilitary prisoner, now a DUP press officer in Ballymoney, was heavily criticised after calling for the release of the notorious Poyntzpass killers.

Blair's call embarrassed the DUP who have constantly criticised prisoner releases.

Reacting to Blair's call a DUP spokesperson said: "He [Blair] was not representing the party."

Gary Blair had called on British Secretary of State Peter Hain to free LVF killers Stephen McClean and Noel McCready in the aftermath of the LVF's decision to disband.

The pair are serving life sentences for the 1998 murders of best friends Catholic Damien Trainor and Protestant Philip Allen who were shot dead in a bar in Poyntzpass, County Armagh.

Ethnic minorities welcomed

New figures indicate West Belfast is the most welcoming area in Belfast for ethnic minorities.

813 racist incidents were recorded across the Six Counties marking a rise of 79.5%. Only 13 racist incidents were recorded in West Belfast compared to South Belfast which topped the poll with 159 incidents.

Flair Campbell, spokes-person for the West Against Racism Network said there had been a great community effort on the ground to stamp out racism and raise awareness.

PSNI ignore sectarian attack

Sinn Féin in Derry has criticised the PSNI after they failed to answer a number of telephone calls reporting sectarian attacks on Nationalist homes in Upper Bennett Street area of the city on Tuesday night 1 November.

Councillor Patricia Logue said that after stones were thrown at homes by a who made their escape into the nearby loyalist Fountain Estate residents made a number of calls to the PSNI but were totally ignored.

An Phoblacht
44 Parnell Sq.
Dublin 1