[Sinn Fein]

6 May 1998

McLaughlin on Sinn Fein Ard Chomhairle resolutions

Sinn Fein Party Chairperson Mitchel McLaughlin has confirmed that the paper leaked to the media this morning is a copy of the recommendations which the Ard Chomhairle will be putting to the Ard Fheis on Sunday

Mr Mc Laughlin said:

``The Sinn Fein Ard Chomhairle met yesterday and agreed recommendations to be put to the Ard Fheis on Sunday. We are currently distributing these to the party organisation and membership, and the proposed resolutions are to be published in this week's edition of An Phoblacht/Republican News due out tomorrow.

``A Belfast journalist got a copy of the resolutions without authorisation by the Sinn Fein leadership. I suspect it may have been given to him by someone outside the party as part of our distribution was by fax.

``The Ardchomhairle is recommending to the Ard Fheis that it support a `yes' vote in both states. This is in the context of our absolute rejection of partition, of the unionist veto and of British rule. It is our view that the Good Friday Agreement can be developed. It marks a phase and it is our firm intention to continue to make advances in the next phase.

``The Ard Chomhairle appreciates and understands the difficulties which a `yes' vote presents to some republicans and that they may wish to vote otherwise. This is reflected in the Ard Chomhairle resolution.

``The Ard Chomhairle is also proposing that the party constitution be amended to enable candidates to stand in the elections on the basis of participation in the Assembly both as a way of ensuring maximum republican representation in the North/South Council and with the objective of expanding the all Ireland structures.

``This is in keeping with our view that Sinn Fein must remain at the centre of the political process.

``There are other resolutions arguing for different positions from within the party. It will be for the Ard Fheis to debate and vote on these motions.''

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