[Sinn Fein]

24th May 2003

Taoiseach given dossier detailing Britain's undercover war in Ireland

Sinn Fein President Gerry Adams and Chief Negotiator Martin McGuinness MP this morning met An Taoiseach Bertie Ahern and Foreign Affairs Minister Brian Cowen in Dublin to discuss ongoing revelations of collusion and the need for full disclosure from the British government.  During the meeting they also discussed the need for the Irish government to move speedily on their commitment to northern representation in the Oireachtas and the crisis in the peace process.


Speaking following the meeting Mr. Adams said


"This morning the Taoiseach and I spoke at length about the ongoing revelations of collusion.  I presented him with a dossier (Who sanctioned Britain's death squads - Time for the Truth) detailing the involvement of the British government through its agencies MI5, British Military Intelligence and RUC/Special Branch in the murder of its citizens.  It is clear that all of these agencies are continuing to operate and that they are intent on destabilising the entire peace process. The lid needs to be lifted on this issue and there needs to be full disclosure.  The people of Ireland deserve to know the truth and the people of Britain have a right to know what was done in their name.


"In the last four weeks we have seen a spotlight put on Britain's undercover war in Ireland with the publication of only a limited summary of the Stevens report, the revelations regarding the bugging of Sinn Fein Chief Negotiator Martin McGuinness, the briefings by British Intelligence of unsubstantiated allegations in respect of an alleged British agent in the IRA codenamed OEStakeknife' and the report that the UVF had a spy network which colluded with the military and police personnel to kill.   All of this, at a time when the British government moved unilaterally to stop the Assembly elections.


"The response of the British government has been to continue business as usual ie wall of silence, obstruction of inquiries, failure to make full disclosure, refusal to investigate, destruction of evidence and ultimately failure to prosecute.


"The Taoiseach is on record voicing his concern at the activities of these agencies and at the fact that he has been unable thus far to get clarity from the British government. 


"It is time that the British government took responsibility for the activities of its agencies over the last thirty years.  It is time that they stopped obstructing the work of the Saville Tribunal and the Barron Inquiry.  It is time for the truth."


In relation to the peace process Mr. Adams said:


"The cancellation of the elections by the British government has made things even more difficult for everyone on the island, particularly the Irish government.  We need to work this mess out.  We need to get the British government to undo the damage that they have done and the first step in all of this is the setting of an election date."

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