[Sinn Fein]

3ú Deireadh Fómhair 2001

Hunger strikers honoured in South Africa

On day three of his trip to South Africa, Sinn Fein President Gerry Adams MP today unveiled a monument at Robben Island dedicated to the memory to all those who died and suffered on hunger strike in Ireland and South Africa. Today marks the 20th anniversary of the ending of the 1981 Irish Hunger Strike.

The monument, designed by Bobby Ballagh, is located in the exercise yard of the prison on Robben Island, overlooking the cells where Nelson Mandela, Walter Sisulu and other leaders of the struggle against apartheid were held.

The unveiling ceremony was performed by Gerry Adams, former political prisoner Pat Sheehan and Ahmed Kathrada, Chair of the Council which runs Robben Island.

Speaking at the ceremony Gerry Adams expressed his deep honour at being present to unveil the monument. He thanked the ANC for their help and assistance over the years and spoke of the similarity of experience particularly in terms of political prisoners.

Commenting on the deepening crisis in the peace process, Mr. Adams said:

``Unionism now appears united in its opposition to the Good Friday Agreement and to the changes it heralds. There will be enormous disappointment, among all people who want the Good Friday Agreement to work,  that the unionist parties are now intent on bringing down the institutions.'' ENDS

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