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5 November 1998 Edition

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Back issue: Talks welcome but 6 Co independence not

To clear up any misunderstanding which may have arisen due to inaccurate media reporting of the debate on ``Talks with Loyalists'' at this year's Sinn Fein Ard Fheis, Gerry Adams, Vice-President, issued the following statement:

``The Ard Fheis was merely re-emphasising Sinn Fein's policy to hold discussions with anyone who wishes to talk to us''. ``In the past, in discussions with loyalists, we have clearly pointed out that the idea of a six-county independent state is not compatible with Sinn Fein policy.

``This remains the case. Years ago we ruled out also the idea of a six-county/twenty-six county federation as put forward by John Hume of the SDLP, because any future political settlement, even a federal one, which is based on the unnatural six-county statelet is a recipe for further strife and conflict.

``In welcoming talks with loyalist people - not necessarily loyalist paramilitaries - we look forward to honest open discussions of our policies and we welcome particularly any indication of loyalist disenchantment with the British connection.

``It must be stressed, however, that Sinn Fein will not prop up a partitionist regime. We strive for the establishment, by the Irish people, of a Socialist Republic.''

An Phoblacht 4 November 1978

An Phoblacht
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