What's Mo Mowlam Going to Do When She's Freed Every Prisoner and Not One Ounce of Semtex Has Been Decommissioned?; Every Day in Northern Ireland at Least One Person Is Brutally Beaten or Shot in a Paramilitary Assault. as the Ever-Increasing Number of Attacks Continues, VINCENT McKENNA of the Belfast-Based Human Rights Group Families against Intimidation and Terror Asks: "Who Is Policing the Peace Process?"

By McKENNA, Vincent | The Mirror (London, England), February 5, 1999 | Go to article overview

What's Mo Mowlam Going to Do When She's Freed Every Prisoner and Not One Ounce of Semtex Has Been Decommissioned?; Every Day in Northern Ireland at Least One Person Is Brutally Beaten or Shot in a Paramilitary Assault. as the Ever-Increasing Number of Attacks Continues, VINCENT McKENNA of the Belfast-Based Human Rights Group Families against Intimidation and Terror Asks: "Who Is Policing the Peace Process?"


McKENNA, Vincent, The Mirror (London, England)


WHEN the people of Ireland voted overwhelmingly for the Good Friday Agreement, they expected their human and civil rights would be protected. Tony Blair promised this before the people backed the deal. Since then, 84 people have been shot, 195 beaten, 500 men, women and children have been exiled and 257 families have had to be rehoused as a result of terrorist intimidation. And it is now reported that the Provisional IRA, rather than dissident republicans as originally suspected, organised an armed robbery in the Republic. One passer-by narrowly escaped death as the gang hijacked his car. There may be a peace process but there is clearly no peace. This catalogue of human rights abuses is not the ranting of anti-Agreement politicians or terrorists. Peace groups backed the Belfast Agreement and want to see it work, but paramilitary groups from both sides are wrecking and destabilising the peace process. And most abuses have been carried out by terrorists whose political front men signed up to the principles of non-violence that are the very core of the Agreement. RUC Chief Constable Sir Ronnie Flanagan confirmed this just before Christmas and again this week.THESE acts of inhumanity are cynical, systematic and politically organised. Yet they go unpunished by any sanction against republican and loyalist godfathers. Mo Mowlam was challenged by both Conservative and Labour MPs to carry out some sanction against the terrorists' representatives within the peace process. Unfortunately, Dr Mowlam may soon have no sanctions left as nearly all paramilitary prisoners will be free within the next few months. Sinn Fein's main negotiator, Martin McGuinness and some loyalist representatives point to the "unacceptability" of the RUC as the reason that these human rights abuses continue.

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What's Mo Mowlam Going to Do When She's Freed Every Prisoner and Not One Ounce of Semtex Has Been Decommissioned?; Every Day in Northern Ireland at Least One Person Is Brutally Beaten or Shot in a Paramilitary Assault. as the Ever-Increasing Number of Attacks Continues, VINCENT McKENNA of the Belfast-Based Human Rights Group Families against Intimidation and Terror Asks: "Who Is Policing the Peace Process?"
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