15 October 1998 Edition

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Anthem snub ``an insult''

Sinn Fein Assembly representative and spokesperson on Equality, John Kelly, has accused David Trimble of a ``calculated insult'' following his boycott of the playing of the Irish national anthem at an Irish-American business function in the US last Wednesday 7 October .

Mr Kelly said, ``Mr Trimble is first Minister designate. He is supposed to act in accordance with that post, both in the letter and the spirit in which he was appointed. His behaviour in refusing to be present when the Irish national anthem was being played is a calculated insult to the vast majority of people on this island who voted for the `Good Friday' agreement, and whose identity and aspirations are represented by the anthem''.

``Mr Trimble's behaviour reflects the fact that he is failing to appreciate and accept the commitments in the Good Friday agreement to equality. That means that the nationalist cultural identity, symbols and ethos, must be respected by those who support the agreement.''

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