Letters to the Editor

Former SF supporters fair game to British rule of law

WHY does the media feel that it is OK that when someone is arrested for something republicans are alleged to have done to disclose their identity but not when they are loyalists?

Ivor Bell was arrested in connection with the killing of Jean McConville. There was no protest from Sinn Fein. Ivor was reputed to be a close associate of Gerry Adams at the time of the killing and indeed Gerry Adams has been publicly implicated in being involved in that killing but Ivor Bell's arrest did not provoke any outcry from Sinn Fein. Of course it is publicly known that Ivor Bell no longer agrees with Sinn Fein but when allegations surfaced in relation to Gerry Adams with this killing and around the Boston tapes we had senior American politicians complaining that pursuing Gerry Adams could destabilise the peace process. We know as well that Gerry Adams suggested to Tony Blair that it would not be in the "public interest" to mount a prosecution against anyone for alleged 'offences' carried out before July 1998. Yet when Gerry McGeough was arrested, charged and convicted for something the IRA claimed responsibility for in 1981, Sinn Fein was silent. It stands in contrast to sinn Fein's approach towards Seamus Kearney and John Downey both of whom have remained sinn Fein supporters. Compare it also to the Sinn Fein reaction

The message following the Sinn Fein decision to support policing and justice in 2005 is clearly that we will support your prosecution of anyone, including former republican activists except those continue to support Sinn Fein. Sinn Fein is opposed to the prosecution of those people because they continue to support the peace process. It is obvious that Sinn Fein which long complained of political policing in the six counties now supports it and anyone who once supported sinn Fein/IRA but no longer does is expendable and fair game to the British Rule of Law.

SEAN O'FIACH

Belfast BT11

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