REPUBLICAN DEMO TARGETS BLUNKETT; Minister Forced to Cancel Tour of Jobs Centre
Byline: By JOE GORROD
JOBS Minister David Blunkett sidestepped a republican preotest in support of a terrorist bomber yesterday when he visited Belfast with a group of employment chiefs from European governments.
He cancelled a visit to a jobs centre at Springvale in West Belfast and instead met a delegation from the area in the City Hall.
Security sources said that his visit, attended by the other members of the European group, could have been a risk.
But Mr Blunkett said afterwards: "I planned to meet the people from Springvale and I met them. They gave me a Celtic clock, which I will treasure.""
Around 60 people demanding the release of IRA bomber Sean Kelly picketed the Springvale centre where the Works and Pensions Minister was hosting the EU ministers.
Kelly, convicted of bombing a Shankill Road fish shop where 10 people died in 1993, got out of jail under the Good Friday Agreement.
He was sent back to prison last month by Secretary of State Peter Hain for alleged breach of licence.
Among those taking part in the protest was prominent Belfast republican Eddie Copeland.
Some protesters were carrying posters and others wearing T-shirts demanding Kelly's release. …