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Adams 'unaware of his brother's role in Sinn Fein cumann'

Sinn Fein leader Gerry Adams has claimed he only discovered on Friday that his brother, Liam, the subject of charges of incestuous abuse of his daughter, was chairman of the local Sinn Fein cumann in Andersonstown, west Belfast, right beside where Gerry Adams lives.

Gerry Adams had previously claimed that he had known about the abuse of Aine Tyrell by her father, his brother, in 1987 and that he had him expelled from Sinn Fein in 1997.

However, it emerged last week that from 2000 to 2004 Liam Adams had served as chairman of the Sinn Fein cumann in Andersonstown -- a Sinn Fein heartland where Gerry Adams' headquarters, Connolly House, is situated. He had also previously been a leading party member in Dundalk where he had fled after a police investigation began into the abuse allegations.

Liam Adams remains a resident in the Republic while a European arrest warrant is drawn up by the PSNI. Photographic evidence shows Gerry Adams continued his relationship with his brother after the

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abuse allegations were made known to him.

These include a picture with Gerry Adams, former party treasurer Joe Cahill and Liam Adams at Liam Adams' wedding in Dundalk in 1993.

It has also emerged that Liam Adams continued to hold positions in west Belfast that allowed him access to children. He worked at the Clonard Youth Club on the Falls Road from 1998 to 2003. The club is in the grounds of Clonard Monastery.

Liam Adams' daughter, Aine, has claimed she suffered abuse at the hands of her father from the age of four onwards. The complaint was made to the then Royal Ulster Constabulary in 1987 at a time when the IRA campaign was in full swing and making any form of contact with the police in the North could be punishable by death by the IRA.

Despite the seriousness of these claims, Liam Adams continued for many years to be protected by the IRA.

Republican sources in west Belfast say he was by no means the only offender protected and other cases are very well known including a former "officer commanding" who abused young girls from a well-known republican family. He was moved out of the city and has been a resident in Donegal for years.

Sunday Independent