Tuesday 24 October 2017

Dissidents determined to kill Sinn Fein chief Gerry Adams

Noel McAdam

Sinn Fein president Gerry Adams has been warned that dissident terrorists are determined to kill him and other senior republicans.

After receiving his fifth formal notification from police in almost as many months, the outgoing West Belfast MP said the level of threat against him appeared to be increasing.

“They're trying to kill us. I got notice just last week of the increased threat level against me,” he said yesterday.

“And I know that others in our leadership — from Martin McGuinness through to other representatives — are under very, very serious threat.”

The latest warning came less than a month after Northern Ireland Office Minister Paul Goggins disclosed the threat level against Adams is substantial, with an attack “a strong possibility”.

In January he was informed of a separate threat from the loyalist Orange Volunteers splinter group.

Mr Adams has said he takes all threats seriously but will not allow them to deter him from carrying out his work as an elected representative.

And he added yesterday: “The way to defeat them is by doing what we're doing, is by challenging them, is by giving people a peaceful and democratic way forward, and is by seeking popular support for that.”

The comments came as he also claimed increasing numbers of unionists privately view a united Ireland as “inevitable” — and many look forward to it. Launching his party’s election manifesto yesterday, Mr Adams admitted he had been unable to persuade a single unionist to publicly support the call for Irish unity.

But he added: “I could point to numerous unionists who privately believe Irish unity is inevitable and many unionists who are looking forward to that.”

Unionists, including the DUP, were now attending meetings of the north/south institutions regularly which was the best way of working towards unity, on a day to day basis, Mr Adams added.

Focusing on the core issue of the Northern Ireland election campaign in the last week — the prospect of spending cuts which the DUP warned could cost 2,000 jobs — Mr Adams appealed to all parties to form a united front to argue for an increase in the Government’s block grant to the North.

Mr Adams said he had no preference between a Conservative or a Labour Government because “whoever is in power there does not govern in our interests”.

But he argued there has been “quite a significant shift”, with more people interested in the North's Assembly than in Westminster politics because “they have more say” over devolution.

Source: Belfast Telegraph

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