DUP threatens to pull plug on Stormont government over Provisional IRA claims

时间:2019-09-15  作者:车蹭绂  来源:电子艺游网址平台  浏览:54次  评论:16条

Northern Ireland’s power-sharing coalition is hanging by a thread after the Democratic Unionist party confirmed it was prepared to follow the UUP in quitting the Stormont government over alleged ongoing Provisional (PIRA) activity.

The DUP MP for Lagan Valley, Jeffrey Donaldson, said on Thursday his party was preparing a motion to suspend Sinn Féin in government over claims republicans had as a paramilitary force.

Donaldson said that if the remaining parties in the power-sharing coalition refused to support their proposal, the DUP would bring down the regional government, probably on a temporary basis.

“In the end, if the other parties are not prepared to support the exclusion of Sinn Féin, then we will act unilaterally, and if that means that we have a period in where we don’t have a government until we resolve and sort out these issues then so be it,” he told Radio 4’s Today programme.

The DUP MP was responding to Wednesday’s move by his former party, the Ulster Unionists, whose leadership recommended the . The UUP’s ruling body is certain to endorse that line from party leader Mike Nesbitt when it meets on Saturday.

The political crisis has come about after the whom mainstream republicans blamed for killing former Belfast IRA commander Gerard “Jock” Davison back in May.

Last week, the chief constable of the Police Service of Northern Ireland, George Hamilton, said , although he stressed it had not been sanctioned by the organisation’s leadership.

However, just the confirmation that the PIRA remained intact as an organisation was enough for unionists to contemplate leaving the power-sharing administration with .

Sinn Féin’s Gerry Kelly, an influential figure within the republican movement, accused the UUP of manufacturing a crisis. “I do not think the executive should fall. Mike Nesbitt is trying to push the DUP into following them [the UUP],” Kelly said.

The UUP’s decision to move into opposition inside the Stormont assembly has put intense internal pressure on the DUP, the largest unionist political force, to either seek to exclude Sinn Féin from government or resign from the administration, triggering fresh elections.

Explaining his reasons for urging an exit from government on Wednesday, Nesbitt said: “Seventeen years on, we are told the IRA still exists, and that it has a command structure, at a senior level.

“We are also told members of the IRA have committed a murder on the streets of our capital city, working with another criminal gang, Action Against Drugs. And in response, Sinn Féin trot out their single transferrable speech of denial. That speech is threadbare. It has put a hole in the fabric of the agreement.”

Unionists – including the Nobel peace prize winner David Trimble, who helped secure the 1998 Good Friday agreement – have suggested reconstituting the independent monitoring commission to restore confidence in the unionist community.

The former first minister of Northern Ireland and now Conservative peer has argued that a ceasefire monitoring body should be established to examine claims of ongoing IRA and loyalist paramilitary activity. The existence of such a monitoring body would deter further paramilitary violence, Lord Trimble has said.

Meanwhile, a nationalist member of the Stormont assembly alleged on Thursday that the PSNI concocted a secret agreement with the IRA 10 years ago not to prosecute members involved in the forensic cleanup of a bar following a high-profile murder.

The SDLP’s Alex Attwood claims a former PSNI assistant chief constable told him that police would not pursue those who helped the IRA dispose of evidence in the murder of Robert McCartney, from East Belfast. His sisters conducted an international campaign to bring his killers to justice that went all the way to the White House.

A knife used to stab McCartney was disposed off while the bar was wiped clean with bleach and other cleansing agents to remove any DNA or other forensic traces of those who beat up and killed McCartney.

Attwood claimed the senior police officer told him that detectives offered not to prosecute those behind the coverup to get them to inform on the killers. No such information was ever forwarded to the PSNI and no one has ever been convicted of the 33-year-old’s murder. Among those who were questioned about what went on inside Magennis’s bar in January 2005 was a Sinn Féin councillor from the area.

McCartney’s sister Catherine said: “Our family has known for a long time that the criminal justice system is a sham, but details of this illustrates it perfectly.

“It is unbelievable that the police were discussing the tactics and strategy of a murder investigation with the Provos and then implementing what was agreed. Neither Sinn Féin nor the Provisional IRA, a proscribed organisation, should have had any input into my brother’s murder investigation. It is sickening and disturbing beyond belief that they did.”