Monday 25 September 2017

Foster hits out at Corbyn's 'abhorrent' stance over IRA

Northern Ireland Secretary James Brokenshire has accused Mr Corbyn of having 'IRA sympathies'. Photo: REUTERS/Darren Staples
Northern Ireland Secretary James Brokenshire has accused Mr Corbyn of having 'IRA sympathies'. Photo: REUTERS/Darren Staples
Luke Byrne

Luke Byrne

British Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn has been heavily criticised by Arlene Foster for refusing to unequivocally condemn the IRA.

Mr Corbyn has come under a torrent of criticism by Conservative politicians in the heat of the UK's general election after he would only condemn both loyalists and republicans for acts of violence during the Troubles.

Democratic Unionist Party leader Ms Foster said Mr Corbyn's alleged refusal to denounce the IRA was "abhorrent".

"I think he has put himself outside the political pale," she said.

"I think it is abhorrent he seems to be caught up with the perpetrators of violence without any thought for those of us who were victims of the IRA violence through the Troubles."

The controversy followed an interview with broadcaster Sky News over the weekend, where he was asked whether he condemned the IRA.

Mr Corbyn defended his contacts with republicans in the midst of the IRA bombings.

"There were loyalist bombs as well," he said.

"I condemn all the bombing by both the loyalists and the IRA," he added, speaking with the station's Sophy Ridge.

Northern Ireland Secretary James Brokenshire has accused Mr Corbyn of having "IRA sympathies".

Both former taoiseach Bertie Ahern and Sinn Féin president Gerry Adams have been drawn into commenting on the controversy.

"We certainly don't want to dig up any of the enmities, animosities of the past," Mr Ahern said. Mr Adams said Mr Corbyn was "on the right side of history" in supporting Irish republicans and had respected the party's democratic mandate.

Irish Independent

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