Sunday 21 January 2018

Robinson hits back at republicans

Gerry Adams should admit he was in the IRA, DUP leader Peter Robinson has demanded
Gerry Adams should admit he was in the IRA, DUP leader Peter Robinson has demanded

Peter Robinson has called on Gerry Adams to admit he was in the IRA.

The DUP leader has hit back at republicans in the latest in a spate of tit for tat attacks. He said his party's partners in government needed to come clean about their members' past. He also singled out Sinn Fein chairman Declan Kearney for special criticism.

"If Mr Kearney has the temerity to describe his speech as reconciliation then I suspect he would regard a knee capping as physiotherapy," he said.

Sinn Fein president and Louth/East Meath TD Mr Adams has faced questions about his past.

Mr Robinson said: "If republicans genuinely want the truth to be told let Gerry Adams admit he was in the IRA. Let him disclose he was in its leadership.

"Let republicans confess responsibility for the Northern Bank robbery and let Sinn Fein leaders who have been named for involvement in terrorism by their former IRA colleagues come clean. Let the IRA give details of the multitude of murders and attacks they engaged in and then come and talk to us about setting up a truth commission."

Amid tensions between the largest parties at Stormont over delays to Executive decisions, the First Minister criticised a speech on Wednesday by Mr Kearney and said the party had lost the plot. He accused republicans of "synthetic posing" while claiming to want a truth commission to investigate past atrocities.

He said it defied understanding and stretched words beyond any natural meaning to describe Mr Kearney's contribution as anything approximating reconciliation, adding: "I appreciate that having fought a 40 year terrorist campaign the concept of reconciliation is somewhat new to the republican movement.

"It was not often heard when they were engaged in murdering members of the security forces, ethnically cleansing Protestants along the border, terrorising their community, or conducting their criminal empire. But now that the notion of reconciliation has been revealed to them, they behave as if they are the first to discover it."

"They even claim to own the concept and believe everyone should join in their parody of it. Well they aren't, they don't and we won't."

Press Association

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