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May 30, 2005

Catholics Twice As Likely To Be Jobless

News about Ireland & the Irish

IO 05/30/05 Catholics Twice As Likely To Be Jobless
SF 05/30/05 Sinn Féin Challenges Irish Government Referendum Position
BT 05/30/05 Euro Constitution Is Dead, Say Ulster MEPs
BT 05/30/05 DUP Warning Over ID Cards Vote
IC 05/30/05 Family'S Anger As Loyalist Is Charged
BT 05/30/05 Sinn Fein Calls For More Housing In The Countryside
IC 05/30/05 It's Far Safer To Live In West Belfast
BT 05/30/05 Victim's Dad Slams Lisa 'Probe'
BB 05/30/05 Crime Gang Suspected Over Robbery
NL 05/30/05 McCartney Threat Posted On Internet
UT 05/30/05 Irish Model Dies In Japan Fall
NL 05/30/05 Hunger Strike Film Likely To Cause A Row
IH 05/30/05 Obese Patients 'May Die On Waiting Lists'
IO 05/30/05 Vintners: Café Bars Will Not Reduce Binge-Drinking


North's Catholics Twice As Likely To Be Jobless As Protestants

30/05/2005 - 08:27:00

Catholic women in the North are three and a half times more likely to
be unemployed than Protestant women, according to new British
government statistics.

The figures show that Catholics in general are more than twice as
likely to be on the dole queue as Protestants, a situation that has
remained virtually unchanged in the past year.

The latest figures follow the publication of separate "deprivation"
statistics showing that three of the four areas of highest
unemployment in the North are in mainly nationalist areas.


Sinn Féin Challenges Irish Government Referendum Position

Published: 30 May, 2005

Sinn Féin MEP Mary Lou McDonald today challenged Minister for Foreign
Affairs Dermot Ahern on the government's referendum position. She said
"is it all very well to say that the government are just going to push
ahead, but what are they going to push ahead with? The constitution
has been rejected in France so it does not have the unanimous support
which it requires to come into force."

Ms. McDonald said:

"It is all very well for Dermot Ahern to say that the government is
going to press ahead but they need to tell us what they are going to
press ahead with. The proposed Constitution requires the support of
all 25-member states to be ratified, that clearly cannot happen, as it
has been rejected by the French. Are the government seriously
suggesting that millions of people across Europe are going to be
ignored and that the referendum will be re-run in every country that
rejects it until the EU bureaucrats get the result they want.

"The French people are to be congratulated. The result of their
referendum must be respected.

"Their success is a major boost to all those who believe that this
Constitution should be rejected because it is undemocratic,
militaristic and right wing.

"Sinn Féin is totally opposed to the proposed EU Constitution. We want
to see it comprehensively rejected and are leading a major campaign to
bring this about. But I would challenge the Irish government , given
the French rejection of the Constitution, to tell us exactly what we
will be voting for if this is put to the people in the Autumn." ENDS


Euro Constitution Is Dead, Say Ulster MEPs

By Noel McAdam
30 May 2005

Northern Ireland's MEPs today demanded that the British Government
accept that the new European constitution is dead after its firm
rejection in France.

DUP MEP, Jim Allister, warned that the Government must not attempt to
introduce parts of the constitution, which included a permanent
European President and a single European Foreign Minister, "by stealth
or the back door".

Ulster Unionist MEP, Jim Nicholson, said: "I can see no useful purpose
for the United Kingdom going ahead with its referendum because the
constitution is dead."

But former MEP, DUP leader Ian Paisley, today insisted the referendum
should still go ahead - so that the British people can have their say
and "finally bury" the constitution.

Mr Paisley, an MEP for 25 years, said: "The British nation must insist
on the burial of this European constitution or the Blair government,
which are its most ardent supporters, will return to it again and
again as they have done with the Belfast Agreement."

His former Euro-colleague, Ulster Unionist Lord Kilclooney, said: "The
people of Europe, including Northern Ireland, support co-operation
within Europe by sovereign States - they do not approve of a totally
integrated Europe."

Sinn Fein also welcomed the French verdict, where almost 55% voted
"no" and 45% "yes", and warned the Irish Government against putting it
to the people.

The party's Dublin MEP, Mary Lou McDonald, said: "Given the French
rejection, I would challenge the Irish government to tell us exactly
what we will be voting for if this is put to the people in the


DUP Warning Over ID Cards Vote

By Chris Thornton
30 May 2005

The DUP has signalled that their MPs are prepared to play tough with
Labour's narrower majority in parliament by saying they could vote
against plans for national ID cards.

The party has warned Prime Minister Tony Blair and Government whips
that their support is not guaranteed - indicating they could end up
demanding concessions in the peace process for their nine votes at

The controversial ID cards plan is expected to create a substantial
Labour rebellion.

With the Government's majority at 66, the whips could be forced to
look to the smaller parties for support if enough Labour MPs oppose
the plan.

Sammy Wilson, the East Antrim MP, said: "The Government should not
think that by simply putting an anti-terrorist tag on the legislation
that it will automatically have our support. It is clear that the
issue of identity cards is going to be a difficult one for the Labour

He said there is "a great deal of unease about the proposed scheme
amongst Labour members".

"The DUP has no difficulty in supporting legislation designed to deal
with terrorists and make life harder for them.

"However, we remain to be convinced about the implementation of
legislation involving identity cards and their value."

Mr Wilson said that the DUP wants to know more about how the cards
would operate, what information they would carry, and the cost. He
added that the DUP is also concerned that the introduction of ID cards
would give the authorities in the Republic access to information about
individuals in Northern Ireland.

And he said the DUP has other concerns about the management of the
technology behind the cards, accusing the Government of a poor track
record with IT contracts.


Family'S Anger As Loyalist Is Charged

The family of Ardoyne man Eddie Campbell, who was murdered by a
Loyalist death squad in 1987 have spoken of their hurt and dismay that
one of the men convicted of his murder and later released has appeared
in court on arms and extortion charges.

Robert Molyneaux was sentenced to life imprisonment for the murder of
Eddie Campbell in October 1988 alongside Darren Larmour and another

He was released in 1998, but he recently appeared in court on
extortion charges as well as possessing a firearm with intent to
endanger life.

The Campbells said that if he is found guilty of the charges he should
have his licence revoked and made to serve the rest of his sentence.

Robert Molyneaux was sentenced to life for the murder of taximan Eddie
Campbell on July 3,1987. The loyalist gang hired his taxi before
shooting him and dumping his body in Ligoniel.

Robert Molyneaux was also sentenced to life for his part in the murder
of 22-year-old Catholic James (Jim) Meighan who was murdered three
months later in September 1987, as well as a range of other terrorist

In the court Molyneaux and his co-accused sniggered in the dock
according to the family, showing no remorse. After being sentenced the
killers told Eddie's mother Alice that "we would do the same again if
we got the chance".

Robert Molyneaux was released under the terms of the Good Friday
Agreement in 1998 having served ten years of his life sentence.

However last week, on May 21, he appeared in court alongside three
other men on charges of extortion.

Molyneaux, now aged 37, gave his address as Glenbank Place in the
Ligoniel area of North Belfast.

The Campbell family who recently suffered a bereavement said they were
dismayed that Molyneaux's name had cropped up again.

"We are disgusted at hearing this man's name again – it was bad enough
that he killed Eddie," a member of the family told the North Belfast

"The family got its chance to grieve when he was sentenced to life
imprisonment in 1988 and as the years went on and the peace process
came about we had to accept this man getting out of jail under the
Good Friday Agreement which the family expected for a better Ireland
for us all to live in."

Darren Larmour was jailed alongside Molyneaux in October 1998 for his
involvement of Eddie Campbell's murder.

He was also jailed for his involvement in the murder of fellow UDA
member Thomas Dickson who had been shot dead in October 1987. He
served more than ten years like Molyneaux and was released in 1998.

However in February 2002, Larmour was sentenced to five years for
attempting to rape his home-help in June 2001. Judge Anthony Hart said
he was being lenient because Larmour suffered from Huntington's

"This is the second member of the killing gang to be sent back to jail
and we call on the Secretary of State to revoke Molyneaux's licence,
if he is proven guilty of these recent offences, for he has shown that
he is a threat to the public," the family said.

Journalist:: Staff Reporter


Sinn Fein Calls For More Housing In The Countryside

By Chris Thornton
30 May 2005

Sinn Fein has called for more building in the countryside.

Assembly member Alex Maskey told an internal party conference at the
weekend that there should be "a significant increase" in the number of
homes built in country areas.

Mr Maskey listed the build-up of rural homes as one of the party's key
priorities during the meeting of the party's National Elected
Representatives Forum in Guladuff, Co Londonderry.

Reflecting on the party's gains in the Westminster and local
government elections, Mr Maskey told Saturday's gathering: "We are
acutely aware that with an increased political mandate comes an
increased level of political responsibility.

"We will use our increased mandate to advance the peace process, build
for Irish unity and bring forward real social and economic change."

He said the party's vision is "wide reaching and radical" and includes
legislation to ensure "fairness in the allocation of chairs and deputy
chairs on councils", opposition to "the creeping privatisation of
public services" and the appointment of Irish Language Officers to
local councils.

As well as the increase in rural housing, Mr Maskey also advocated "a
properly resourced and effective waste management strategy".


It's Far Safer To Live In West Belfast

As the demolition of Andytown Barracks gathers momentum, new crime
statistics prove yet again...

New PSNI statistics reveal that it is safer to live in West Belfast
than in any other part of Belfast.

The welcome news comes after the Andersonstown News reported on Monday
that a 75-year-old Glencolin woman was robbed by two masked men in her
own home in the early hours of Sunday morning.

However, the new figures show that less crime is committed in West
Belfast than in any other part of Belfast. South Belfast remains the
crime blackspot of the city.

Safest place in the city

Figures remain on a downward spiral as West Belfast stays bottom of
crime league

West Belfast is still the safest area of Belfast to live in, according
to the latest crime figures.

The annual crime statistics released by PSNI this week showed recorded
crime has even experienced a reduction in the West of the city. In
2004/05 there were 5,337 recorded crimes which is down 94 from the
previous year.

The percentage clearance rate of recorded crime has risen from 19.7 in
2003/04 to 22.8 per cent in 2004/05. However, under the guidelines
used by the PSNI when compiling the statistics, clearance does not
necessarily mean that a conviction arose from the crime. It is
sufficient that a person was charged for the crime to be deemed

Jim Auld, a spokesperson for Community Restorative Justice Ireland,
welcomed the reduction in the level of criminal activity in the West
Belfast area. "Any reduction in crime has to be seen as a good thing.
However, the crime figures only decrease significantly when the
community becomes actively involved with a police service which is
acceptable to it and they work in partnership.

"The operative word is partnership. Statutory bodies have a view of
partnership which is you do as they say. We look forward to the day we
can work in partnership with a police service which is acceptable to
the community."

Overall, the figures on crime in West Belfast may be low, but the
statistics in relation to domestic offences are cause for alarm in the
community. There were 532 domestic offences in 2004/05, which Gillian
Gibson, Centre manager in Footprints Women's Centre, says is

"While those figures are quite shocking, they do reflect the work that
we do on a day-to-day basis. In the half mile radius around our centre
there were three incidents last year, two involving senior citizens
and one a young woman. This brings home to you the level of the

"We would also be concerned about the number of attacks which are not
recorded. The figures released do not tell the whole story. There is a
bigger onus on all of us to address this issue within our community,"
said Gillian.

Within the area of racially motivated offences, West Belfast excelled
in comparison to the other areas of Belfast. There were 15 such
offences in the West of the city, compared to 108 in South Belfast.
East and North Belfast had 32 and 49 racist offences respectively.

Gerry McConville, Director of the Falls Community Council (FCC),
welcomed the relatively low number of racial attacks but added a word
of caution.

"While the number of attacks is low, and this is due to the work
carried out by community groups and activists throughout West Belfast,
we must not become complacent. As we can see, attacks have still taken

"Minority groups must feel welcomed into the city and feel safe, and
in that respect we still have a lot to do. We have recently completed
an anti-racism training course for all of our staff and we would
encourage other groups and businesses to do likewise."

With regard to the security situation, casualties from paramilitary-
style attacks and shootings were down from the previous year. Within
West Belfast there were six shootings and six assaults, which was
lower than North and East Belfast.

Journalist:: Staff Reporter


Victim's Dad Slams Lisa 'Probe'

By Linda McKee
30 May 2005

A man whose daughter was murdered by UVF members has condemned an
'investigation' by loyalist terrorists into the killing of Lisa

Frank Smyth's 26-year-old daughter Anne Marie was beaten and strangled
in February 1992, after she strayed into the company of sectarian
loyalists in east Belfast.

His comments come after claims that one of the UVF members
investigating Lisa's death was convicted in connection with his own
daughter's murder.

Mr Smyth was horrified that the terrorist group whose members murdered
his daughter had now launched an investigation into Lisa's

"It is an absolute disgrace. It is disgusting. Who gave them the
authority?" he told today's Irish News.

"Both the Red Hand, UVF and UDA were all involved in Marie's murder.
The sad part is none of them were charged with membership of any

Anne Marie, from Armagh, was tricked into leaving a football
supporters club in east Belfast after loyalists discovered she was a
Catholic. She was strangled in a house before her body was dumped on
waste ground and her throat cut.

Mr Smyth was commenting on reports that the UVF and Red Hand Commando
are investigating Lisa's killing, which has been blamed on the LVF,
another loyalist faction.

The 25-year-old shop worker vanished from a party at a caravan site in
Co Down on February 28 and her body has never been found.

Another bereaved father, Raymond McCord, whose son Raymond jr was
beaten to death by a UVF gang in 1997, claimed one of the
'investigators' of Lisa's murder had been convicted in connection with
the death of Anne-Marie.

He described it as another example of the UVF's hypocrisy.

But PUP leader David Ervine insisted Samuel 'Uel' Cooke, believed to
be the UVF's second in command in east Belfast, was not in charge of
the probe.

He said: "It's just not true."


Crime Gang Suspected Over Robbery

The police have said paramilitary involvement in Saturday's robbery at
the Boots store in Belfast is not their main line of inquiry.

It is thought a gang of six to 10 people was involved in stealing
£118,000 from the city centre store.

The families of two members of staff were held hostage while the
robbery took place.

Detective Chief Inspector Ian Gilchrist said police are concentrating
on criminal involvement.

"The investigation's at a very early stage. I'm saying at this stage
paramilitary involvement is not our main line of inquiry," Mr
Gilchrist said.

Boots has said it will carry out a review of its security procedures
following the robbery.

Two employees were ordered to go to the shop and get money while their
families were held hostage at their homes in the south and west of the

The cash, which was hidden in sports bags, was handed over to the
thieves at Wellington Place at about 0915 BST.

Boots area manager Mary Woods said the robbery made Saturday a
difficult day for all their employees.

"We have 200 staff working in the store and thankfully, although what
happened was extremely traumatic for those involved, no-one was hurt,"
she said.

"We are continuing to work closely with PSNI in their investigations."

Detectives want to speak to anyone who may have witnessed the money
being exchanged.

No-one was injured during the incident, however, the hostages were
said to be deeply shocked.

The chemist, which is Boots' main store in Belfast, remained closed
throughout Saturday while the police investigation took place.

It re-opened on Sunday.

Story from BBC NEWS:
Published: 2005/05/30 11:30:22 GMT


(Poster's Note: This post was deleted from the site and the member

McCartney Threat Posted On Internet

Monday 30th May 2005

A threat to the McCartney family posted on a website is being
investigated by the PSNI.

A message warning the sisters of the murdered 33-year-old to "shut the
hell up with their lies unless they want seriously injured" appeared
on an internet page operated by former Sinn Fein public relations
officer Danny Morrison.

Posted by an anonymous user under the pseudonym Only I MaTTer, the
message criticised the IRA for expelling those believed responsible
for stabbing the father of two outside a Belfast bar in January.

It said that people east Belfast's Short Strand were "sick" of the
McCartneys, indicating that the author may be from the area.

It is thought that detectives may be able to find the source of the
threat by tracing the server from which the email message was sent.

Catherine McCartney said her family was appalled by the level of
aggression and abuse in the message.

Before this incident, police had twice contacted the McCartneys
regarding other threats to their safety.


Irish Model Dies In Japan Fall

Police in Japan are investigating the death of an Irish-born model.

Twenty one year-old Patricia Sheehan, originally from Enniscorthy in
County Wexford, was killed in an early morning fall in Tokyo, where
she had been working.

She recently starred in `Model Behaviour` on Channel 4.

Although Patricia moved from Enniscorthy when she was four, she will
be buried there after her funeral later this week.


Hunger Strike Film Likely To Cause A Row

By Ian Starrett
Monday 30th May 2005

Unionists are expected to react furiously to a TV movie about the IRA
hunger strikes which is to be shot in the Maze prison.

The film is to be released to coincide with the 25th anniversary of
the 1981 hunger strikes next year.

Ten republicans died during this turbulent and emotive period in
Northern Ireland's history and its release seems set to cause

The DUP's Jeffrey Donaldson said: "It will depend on the portrayal of
it but any attempt to eulogise someone like Bobby Sands and give him
the status of martyrdom would reopen old wounds."

To be entitled Maze, it will be the work of Channel 4 and a British
film company.

Playwright Enda Walsh and Amsterdam-based multimedia artist Steve
McQueen have been commissioned to collaborate on the work.

Both men have already spent some time talking to exhunger strikers and
ex- prisoners in preparation for their drama which will focus on Bobby

Enda Walsh said yesterday: "In the republican community Bobby Sands is
a God. The mythology of the man is so strong."

Sinn Fein's Paul Butler said he thinks the republican community will
welcome the Channel 4 film "as long as they don't attempt to portray
republicans as terrorists and people who had no support".


Obese Patients 'May Die On Waiting Lists'

[Posted: Mon 30/05/2005]
By Niall Hunter - Editor

Many obese patients, some of them teenagers, face dying on the waiting
list for the country's only hospital weight management clinic unless
additional resources are provided for it to expand its service, the
consultant who runs the clinic has warned.

Dr Donal O'Shea told that a Leaving Cert student who
is 21 stone and has major breathing problems due to excessive weight,
was recently referred to the clinic at St Columcille's Hospital in
Loughlinstown in Dublin. However the clinic has had to tell the
student that they are 408th on the waiting list for treatment at the
clinic, which is unable to keep up with demand for its services.

Dr O'Shea warned that there are many other similar people on the
waiting list who could die from conditions such as respiratory arrest,
cardiac disease or pulmonary embolism, if they did not get onto a
weight management programme quickly.

Twelve patients have already died on the waiting list for the clinic,
ranging in age from 22 years to 53 years old. He says he has written
to the Health Service Executive seeking urgent interim funding for
more resources for the Loughlinstown clinic.

"I appreciate that the HSE is actively looking at additional funding
for the service, but it is a very slow process and the waiting list is

Dr O'Shea ,who was a member of the National Taskforce on Obesity, also
says action must be taken nationally to combat obesity. He says he is
very keen that an implementation plan for the Taskforce report is
outlined immediately following its launch recently by the Taoiseach.

Dr O'Shea says the implementation plan would include providing for the
resourcing of services at hospital and primary care level to deal with
obesity, in addition to initiatives such as promoting healthy eating
and more exercise in schools.

He said at least four specialist hospital centres were needed around
the country for managing seriously obese patients. Around 85% of
obesity cases could, he said, be managed in primary care, with the
remainder of morbidly obese patients managed at hospital level.


Vintners: Café Bars Will Not Reduce Binge-Drinking

30/05/2005 - 12:07:02

The Licensed Vintners' Association has said the Government's plans to
introduce new licences for so-called "café bars" will do nothing to
prevent binge-drinking.

Minister for Justice Michael McDowell has announced plans to introduce
new licences for such premises in an effort to promote a
"Mediterranean-style" drinking culture in Ireland.

However, the LVA, which represents Dublin publicans, said any move to
increase the number of drinking outlets in the country would lead to
an accompanying increase in public order problems.

The association's chief executive, Donal O'Keefe, also said there was
no demand for an increase in the number of pubs.

"Who wants more pubs in Ireland?" he asked. "Do consumers want it, do
the enforcement authorities, do the health professionals?

"And how can you say, in an Irish context, with our cultural attitude
to alcohol, that more pubs will contribute to a reduction in binge-
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