[Sinn Fein]

20 August 2001

Policing proposals do not go far enough

Speaking following a meeting îgra Shinn F&fraction;in on Sunday, the group's spokesperson Cllr. Matt Carthy said ``young republicans are very angry at the British government's failure to live up to their commitments and bring forward a new beginning to policing. Their proposals, including the implementation plan cannot and will not secure the support and endorsement of young nationalists and republicans. Cllr. Carthy said:

``When the Patten Report was issued it was extensively debated by young republicans, many of whom believed that it did not go far enough and were sceptical that it would be delivered. Since that time the behaviour of the British government in relation not just to policing, but the wider peace process, has increased our concerns. Furthermore on the ground young nationalists and republicans have seen little change in the treatment that we receive from this sectarian force.

``This is not the new beginning to policing that was promised in the Good Friday Agreement. No amount of window dressing will disguise the fact that the proposed new policing service will remain a British controlled force. It will not be the impartial, accountable and democratic force envisaged in the Patten report.

``These proposals will not secure the support and endorsement of young nationalists and republicans.

``For young nationalists and republicans to have confidence in a new policing service they need to be reassured that that service is community based and democratically accountable. They need to know that the new policing service will have a human rights ethos, which is shared by all those in the service.

``And as a group who have suffered most from the indiscriminate use of Plastic Bullets young nationalists and republicans need to see that these lethal weapons are removed from use. What we want is the new beginning promised by the Good Friday Agreement.''

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