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'My father never talked about 1916' - Maureen Haughey

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Sean Haughey, Síle de Valera and Maureen Haughey at the launch of Fianna Fáil’s events to mark the centenary of the 1916 Rising. Photo: Steve Humphreys

Sean Haughey, Síle de Valera and Maureen Haughey at the launch of Fianna Fáil’s events to mark the centenary of the 1916 Rising. Photo: Steve Humphreys

Sean Haughey, Síle de Valera and Maureen Haughey at the launch of Fianna Fáil’s events to mark the centenary of the 1916 Rising. Photo: Steve Humphreys

Maureen Haughey, daughter of the late former Taoiseach Seán Lemass, has said that her father "never talked about" his role in the 1916 Easter Rising.

The widow of the late former Taoiseach Charlie Haughey opened up about her father yesterday in a rare public interview at the launch of Fianna Fáil's programme of events to commemorate the 1916 Easter Rising.

The 89-year-old revealed that her father, who served as Taoiseach from 1959 until 1966, rarely spoke about his involvement in Ireland's fight for independence because his brother Noel was killed just as the Civil War was due to come to an end and because it may have been too difficult for him.

"He never talked about it, only maybe when some of his old comrades came in and we'd listen in," Mrs Haughey said.

She was speaking at the event in the Royal College of Surgeons on St Stephen's Green, the same building that Constance Markievicz occupied during Easter week in 1916.

"But, he got on with the job and never held any grudges against anybody," she added.

Mrs Haughey said she is "delighted that Fianna Fáil" has decided to "have (our) own events" to commemorate the centenary of the Easter Rising next year. She criticised the Government's plans for the commemorations, saying "we don't know what they are doing".

She added: "It's very low key, but ... anyway, I think it is very good for Fianna Fáil to have our own events."

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