[Sinn Fein]

20th April 2002

Sustained efforts to create contrived crisis in the Peace Process

Sinn Fein President Gerry Adams has warned that there are `sustained efforts to create an entirely contrived crisis in the Peace Process'.

Speaking in Tralee Mr. Adams asked whose interests are served by the series of media stories based on anonymous sources.

``The two governments and particularly the British Government need to be very circumspect about how they respond to the current flurry of media speculation.

``Threats by anti-agreement unionists to take action against Sinn Fein are nothing new. Some of them have built political careers on the word `No'. Neither is it surprising that the British Tories are also exploiting the twists and turns in the Irish Peace Process in their battle with the Labour government. In government, the Conservatives failed to build on the opportunities for peace which existed at that time. In opposition they are even more calculated. The way they ended bi-partisanship shows this.

``But of course the chief culprits in the present controversy are the failed and faceless manipulators in the Special Branch and British Intelligence services. Everyone needs to be very sceptical about stories emanating from these elements or their surrogates.

``They are actively endeavouring to undermine the Sinn Fein leadership and our efforts to promote the Peace Process. Let me make it clear, we will not be deflected from this task. Sinn Fein is wedded to the Peace Process and to bringing about the full implementation of the Good Friday Agreement. This is what our opponents are trying to stop. They will not succeed.

``It is obvious, despite ongoing provocations, that the IRA also is continuing to make a huge contribution to this process. The recent initiative by the IRA leadership to put weapons beyond use is evidence of that. As I said before after the recent raid on Castlereagh and the astonishing claim that this involved republicans, our party will not be scape-goated.

``Neither will we acquiesce to anyone undermining the rights and entitlements of our electorate. The rights and entitlements of all sections of the electorate have to be upheld not threatened or subverted.''

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