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December 08, 2004

News 12/08/04 - IRA Statement Text

Exclusive IRA statement

An Phoblacht today prints in full a statement from the leadership
of Óglaigh na hÉireann.

It is clear from this statement that the IRA was prepared to move
in an unprecedented way to liberate the peace process and in a way
that deals with the genuine concerns of all reasonable people.

It would be unthinkable that this offer would be rejected or lost
because of the impossible demands being made by a unionist
leadership locked into the failed psychology of the past.

The London and Dublin governments have a big choice to make. Do
they face up to the challenge of pressing ahead with the peace
process or do they join Ian Paisley in his demand for a process of

Full text of IRA Statement:

"More than ten years ago, an IRA cessation publicly heralded the
onset of the Irish peace process. Since then, the IRA has, time and
again, demonstrated its commitment to sustaining and developing
that process through a series of very significant and substantive

In the context of the work to conclude a comprehensive agreement,
the leadership of Óglaigh na hÉireannn decided:

:: to support a comprehensive agreement by moving into a new mode
which reflects our determination to see the transition to a totally
peaceful society;

:: all IRA Volunteers be given specific instructions not to engage
in any activity which might thereby endanger that new agreement;

:: the IRA leadership also decided that we will, in this context,
conclude the process to completely and verifiably put all our arms
beyond use;

:: we instructed our representative to agree with the IICD the
completion of this process, speedily, and if possible by the end of

:: to further enhance public confidence we agreed to the presence
of two clergymen as observers during this process.

The IRA leadership decided to contribute in this way to a
comprehensive agreement to resolve all outstanding issues,
including those of concern within unionism. For his part, Ian
Paisley demanded that our contribution be photographed, and reduced
to an act of humiliation.

This was never possible. Knowing this, he made this demand publicly
as the excuse for his rejection of an overall agreement to create a
political context with the potential to remove the causes of
conflict. As the IRA leadership has said before, this is a context
in which Irish republicans and unionists can, as equals, pursue our
respective political objectives peacefully.

We restate our commitment to the peace process. But we will not
submit to a process of humiliation.

We commend our Volunteers and the wider republican base for their
patience and discipline in these testing times. Our commitment,
like theirs, to our republican objectives is undiminished.

We thank those who have made genuine contributions to the efforts
to find solutions to ongoing problems. While acknowledging these
efforts, we reiterate our view that progress cannot be made by
pandering to the demands of those who are against change.

The search for a just and lasting peace is a challenging one. The
IRA leadership has risen to that challenge. The British Government
and the leaders of unionism must do likewise."

P O'Neill
Irish Republican Publicity Bureau

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