[Sinn Fein]

20th June 2002

Fine Gael must make its position on Neutrality clear

Sinn Fein representative on the Forum on Europe Aengus Ó Snodaigh TD has called on the Fine Gael leader Enda Kenny to spell out his party's position on Irish Neutrality.

Deputy Ó Snodaigh said:

"At Tuesdays meeting of the Forum on Europe former Fine Gael leaders John Bruton and Alan Dukes both expressed support for Ireland to become part of a military alliance within the EU.

"This is clearly against the wishes of the vast majority of the Irish people. It is also clearly the reason why Bertie Ahern is travelling around Europe on a publicity roadshow pretending that a declaration on Irish Neutrality will satisfy the concerns of those people who voted no to the Treaty of Nice.

"Enda Kenny must make his party's position clear. Does he support the views of two of his predecessors or will his party join Sinn Fein in the campaign to have neutrality enshrined into the Irish constitution.

"At least John Bruton and Alan Dukes are honest enough to suggest that those who support the Nice Treaty see military alignment as the next step. Those of us who do not wish to see this happen will be increasing our efforts to have that Treaty defeated once again."

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