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Adams delivers broadside against new coalition government

The former Sinn Fein president compared the refusal of Fine Gael and Fianna Fail to enter talks with the party with previous unionist policy.

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Former Sinn Fein president Gerry Adams, left, speaks alongside Sinn Fein TD Pearse Doherty during the funeral of senior Irish republican and former leading IRA figure Bobby Storey at Milltown Cemetery in west Belfast (Liam McBurney/PA)

Former Sinn Fein president Gerry Adams, left, speaks alongside Sinn Fein TD Pearse Doherty during the funeral of senior Irish republican and former leading IRA figure Bobby Storey at Milltown Cemetery in west Belfast (Liam McBurney/PA)

Former Sinn Fein president Gerry Adams, left, speaks alongside Sinn Fein TD Pearse Doherty during the funeral of senior Irish republican and former leading IRA figure Bobby Storey at Milltown Cemetery in west Belfast (Liam McBurney/PA)

Former Sinn Fein president Gerry Adams has delivered a broadside against the new coalition government for “excluding” his party.

The new government was formed between Fianna Fail, Fine Gael and the Greens last weekend several months after the inconclusive general election result in February.

Sinn Fein won the popular vote in the proportional representation poll but did not run enough candidates to fully translate votes into seats and was unable to form a “coalition of the left” with other parties of similar views.

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Taoiseach Micheal Martin and Tanaiste Leo Varadkar at the post-Cabinet press briefing in Dublin Castle (Julien Behal/PA)

Taoiseach Micheal Martin and Tanaiste Leo Varadkar at the post-Cabinet press briefing in Dublin Castle (Julien Behal/PA)

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Taoiseach Micheal Martin and Tanaiste Leo Varadkar at the post-Cabinet press briefing in Dublin Castle (Julien Behal/PA)

Delivering the oration at the funeral of senior republican Bobby Storey in Belfast on Tuesday, Mr Adams accused the Irish parties of “excluding” Sinn Fein, comparing the situation to when unionist parties in Northern Ireland refused to speak to them, then in protest at the actions of the IRA.

“This weekend saw the election of Micheal Martin as Taoiseach as part of the manoeuvre by Fine Gael and Fianna Fail, aided and abetted by the Greens, to maintain the status quo and to prevent Mary Lou McDonald from becoming taoiseach,” he told the gathering at the republican plot at Milltown Cemetery.

“They are entitled to do that but their refusal to talk to the Sinn Fein leadership is a sad little undemocratic throwback to the way the unionist leaders used to behave.

“Denying Sinn Fein voters their right to be included in talks shows how far the Dublin establishment is prepared to go to minimise and to delay the ongoing process of change across this island, including the movement towards Irish unity.

“So, let me say loud and clear.

“They will fail. Just as unionists failed in their exclusion policies.”

Mr Adams also hit out at claims Sinn Fein is controlled by “shadowy figures”.

“We are an open democratic national movement with our elected leadership, led by two fine women and other national leaders and countless regional and local leaders,” he said.

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Former Sinn Fein president Gerry Adams offers an embrace of condolence to Teresa Storey at the funeral of her partner Bobby Storey (Liam McBurney/PA)

Former Sinn Fein president Gerry Adams offers an embrace of condolence to Teresa Storey at the funeral of her partner Bobby Storey (Liam McBurney/PA)

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Former Sinn Fein president Gerry Adams offers an embrace of condolence to Teresa Storey at the funeral of her partner Bobby Storey (Liam McBurney/PA)

“We are proud and glad that Bob and other former IRA volunteers are part of what we are.

“We are also proud of Bob and the others when they were IRA volunteers.

“They and their support base and republican Ireland defeated the British Army. They brought us and their political masters to the negotiating table.”

With reference to the portraits that will be hung in the new Taoiseach’s office, Mr Adams added: “Leo Varadkar has Michael Collins. Micheal Martin has De Valera. We have Bobby Storey.

“Bobby has done more for Irish freedom, peace and unity on this island than either Leo Varadkar or Micheal Martin.”

PA Media