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July 16, 2005

Adams Urges Dialogue Over Parades

News about Ireland & the Irish

BB 07/15/05 Adams Urges Dialogue Over Parades
DI 07/15/05 Kelly Jailing 'Inflames Situation'
DI 07/15/05 Concerns As 'Terror War' Treaty Signed
BB 07/15/05 Nationalists Warned Of Loyalist Threat
SF 07/15/05 Annual Report Highlight Investment Imbalance
IO 07/15/05 UUP Says Funding Imbalance Hits All Communities
BB 07/15/05 Teenager Raped While At Bonfire
DJ 07/15/05 Residents Slam 'Disgraceful Sight'
BT 07/15/05 Orange Leaders 'Knew About Talks'
BT 07/15/05 Derry Sets Model For Parades, Says Hain
UT 07/15/05 Plea For Justice For Loyalist Feud Victim
DJ 07/15/05 Drunken Thugs Spoiling Inishowen Beauty Spots
IT 07/16/05 SF Candidate Spent Most In March Elections
BD 07/15/05 Commentary: Bobby Sands And Akbar Ganji
BB 07/15/05 Surprises Lie Around Coastline
IT 07/16/05 Galway Arts Festival Engulfs City Of The Tribes


Adams Urges Dialogue Over Parades

Dialogue is needed to ensure the violence surrounding an
Orange Order parade in north Belfast is not repeated, Gerry
Adams has said.

The Sinn Fein leader held talks with Irish premier Bertie
Ahern in Dublin to discuss the NI political situation.

There was the need to ensure the marching season continued
"as peaceful as possible", said Mr Adams.

He said he remained hopeful the IRA would respond
positively to his call to embrace a strictly political

Mr Adams said he and Mr Ahern had spoken about the
situation following the rioting in Ardoyne on Tuesday.

"There was a very dangerous situation there, and in Dunloy
and in Derry and it was managed not least because we did a
lot of advance work, certainly in north Belfast and in
Derry," he said.

"Relatively speaking, we got off very lightly despite the
fact that the Orangemen won't talk... and because of the
decision the Parades Commission took."

He added: "No-one was killed in Ardoyne - even though there
was obviously the potential for a terrible disaster in that
area - so I consider that to be a big plus."

There was a need for the Orange Order and North Belfast MP
Nigel Dodds to engage in talks with residents' groups, said
Mr Adams.

'Give time'

Last month, Mr Ahern said the British and Irish governments
were hoping for a statement from the IRA before August.

However, at that time he told the Irish parliament he had
no definitive date.

The IRA is expected to respond to Mr Adams' call for it to
pursue its aims through purely political and democratic

In relation to his appeal to the IRA, he said: "I only made
my appeal in April. Let's give time to these people to sort
out this matter.

"I have stayed away from speculating about what time it
will take, obviously the focus has to be on the type of
positive outcome I have appealed for."

Secretary of State Peter Hain had "made a mistake" over the
re-arrest of Shankill bomber Sean Kelly who should be
released from prison, said the Sinn Fein leader.

Story from BBC NEWS:
Published: 2005/07/15 15:16:37 GMT


Kelly Jailing 'Inflames Situation'

Jarlath Kearney

Sinn Féin president Gerry Adams last night said that the
continued imprisonment of Seán Kelly "throws petrol onto an
already volatile situation".

Mr Adams was speaking as another senior republican
contrasted the British government's actions in north
Belfast during the past week with the case of Mr Kelly.

Speaking to Daily Ireland, North Belfast assembly member
Gerry Kelly demanded Seán Kelly's immediate release ahead
of protests in Belfast and Derry this weekend.

"It is a disgrace that Seán Kelly continues to be interned.
Seán Kelly is actually being interned for trying to work
positively in bringing about calm in north Belfast," Gerry
Kelly said.

"Yet in recent days Orange marchers have been forced
through Catholic areas and loyalist gun gangs are openly
using weapons and issuing statements of intent on the

Seán Kelly was arrested on June 18 by the PSNI on the
direction of NIO secretary of state Peter Hain. The former
republican prisoner's early release under the 1998 Good
Friday Agreement was suspended and he was jailed in
Maghaberry prison, Co Antrim.

Mr Kelly said that the treatment of Seán Kelly now "raises
significant questions about the mentality of those British
securocrats who may have triggered this off and certainly
about the judgment of Peter Hain who signed the internment


Concerns As 'Terror War' Treaty Signed

Ireland and the United States yesterday signed an
international treaty in a bid to step up the fight against
global crime and terror gangs.

The bilateral agreement, signed at the American Embassy in
Dublin, will ensure closer ties between the two states in
police investigations and update rules on the extradition
of suspects.

Michael McDowell, Justice Minister, said the pact would
target drug traffickers, international fraud rackets and
global terrorism while cementing links between detective
teams across the Atlantic.

"Crime is crime no matter whether it takes a terrorist or
an ordinary character," he said. These instruments reaffirm
the commitment of both Ireland and the United States to the
wider international community in the fight against crime."

Mr McDowell said legal loopholes exploited by criminal
gangs would be closed while there would be better
cooperation between police forces.

"Police officers won't have powers outside their own state,
but basically they will have co-operation across the

The treaty updates and supplements existing bilateral pacts
between the two countries dating back more than 20 years.
Extradition agreements from 1983 will be reformed while
legal assistance contracts from 2001 will also be

The pact brings Irish/US treaties into line with deals
already signed by leaders of the European Union and the US.

The two states will have closer assistance on dealing with
the identification of bank information and setting up
transatlantic investigative teams.

Video conferencing will also be used for the taking of
testimony from witnesses or experts.

The treaty also made a provision for requests to be made
seeking guarantees against the use of the death penalty for
suspects held in the US.

James C Kenny, US Ambassador, said the pact was a
significant milestone in international co-operation.

"Every country and all people have a stake in this fight,"
Mr Kenny said.

"Today's agreements strengthen both our resolve and our
means for engaging those who wish to do us harm.

"But this agreement is about more than just terrorism. It
is also about fighting crime, the kind of crime that
touches families and individuals in many ways, at all

Ireland is the eleventh country out of the 25 EU member
states to have signed the bilateral agreement with the US.


Nationalists Warned Of Threat

A number of nationalists in Coleraine have been told they
are under threat from loyalist paramilitaries.

It is understood the men were informed by the police on
Friday afternoon.

Local Sinn Fein Councillor Billy Leonard said the whole
community, nationalist and unionist, must stand together
against the threats.

"It's got to be a case of unionist and loyalist politicians
standing up and being proactive about what is emanating
from their community," he said.

"It's got to be much more than condemnation," Mr Leonard

Story from BBC NEWS:
Published: 2005/07/15 21:33:25 GMT


Invest NI Annual Report Highlight Investment Imbalance

Published: 15 July, 2005

Sinn Féin Economy Spokesperson, Foyle MLA Mitchel
McLaughlin has said that the Annual Invest NI Report
highlights a serious imbalance in investment West of the
Bann and in Border areas.

Mr McLaughlin said:

"The annual Invest NI report shows a clear imbalance the
way resources are being targeted. The impact West of the
Bann, in border areas and in North and West Belfast is
especially stark because these are areas of high
deprivation and unemployment.

"West Belfast received fewer offers of financial assistance
than any other constituency. North and West Belfast
together received less than a third of the financial
assistance given to South and East Belfast for 2003-04
(£12.6 million compared to £41.5 million).

"The 5 border constituencies of South Down, Newry Armagh,
Foyle, West Tyrone and Fermanagh South Tyrone together have
received and have less planned assistance than South
Belfast, an area with significant investment in
infrastructure and with high levels of prosperity and set
for nearly 30% of all INI planned investment in the current
financial cycle.

"The seven constituencies West of the Bann have received
only 10% of assistance given and are only due to receive
10% of planned investment.

"It is no accident that the areas that have received the
lowest levels of INI financial support and investment are
nationalist areas.

"In failing to tackle discrimination and disadvantage and
simply replicating patterns of disadvantage, Invest NI is
part of the problem.

"There is no commitment to seriously tackling social need.

"It's a nonsense for Invest NI to claim, as it does in this
report, that 82% of investment is located in NTSN areas.
The figures show that this is clearly not the case.

"Sinn Féin has consistently argued that the definition for
TSN areas is so wide as to be practically meaningless.

"The correlation between those areas that are losing out on
Invest NI support - West of the Bann, the border counties,
North and West Belfast - with the mapping of areas are the
most deprived and have the least jobs is very strong.

"Invest NI are clearly failing in their duty to equality
proof their investment strategy and as a result the
patterns of neglect, under investment, disadvantage and
discrimination that exist as a result of decades of
unionist misrule and British direct rule are being
reinforced." ENDS

Note to Editors

Table 1 are the details as set out in the INI Annual Report
2003-2004. These specify the number of offers of assistance
by parliamentary constituency, the actual assistance in
millions and the planned investment in millions. It is
worth noting that the West Belfast constituency has the
lowest number of offers of assistance at 96.


Parliamentary Constituency Area No of Offers Assistance (£)

Investment (£)

BELFAST EAST 53 15,781,520 59,561,790
BELFAST NORTH 111 4,491,136 24,863,957
BELFAST SOUTH 268 25,744,481 106,565,647
BELFAST WEST 96 8,083,963 26,637,705
EAST ANTRIM 175 3,895,611 12,601,313
EAST DERRY 116 5,515,632 10,952,580
FERMANAGH/STH TYRONE 211 4,330,331 16,063,338
FOYLE 232 7,590,869 27,306,606
LAGAN VALLEY 189 1,701,255 5,835,880
MID ULSTER 318 5,610,090 25,593,826
NEWRY AND ARMAGH 188 2,126,189 8,466,145
NORTH ANTRIM 194 5,261,235 31,305,993
NORTH DOWN 97 5,051,236 15,224,275
SOUTH ANTRIM 216 4,533,953 15,122,204
SOUTH DOWN 160 1,244,825 4,201,426
STRANGFORD 121 1,641,799 5,431,651
UPPER BANN 240 6,995,359 31,978,233
WEST TYRONE 194 7,314,505 35,664,802
TBD* 2 240,000 4,769,000
TOTAL 3,281 117,153,990 468,146,370


Table 2 shows rounded off amounts and put as a percentage
share of total spend



1. SOUTH DOWN 1.2 1.0%
2. STRANGFORD 1.6 1.4%
3. LAGAN VALLEY 1.7 1.5%
4. NEWRY AND ARMAGH 2.1 1.8%
5. EAST ANTRIM 3.9 3.3%
7. BELFAST NORTH 4.5 3.8%
8. SOUTH ANTRIM 4.5 3.8%
9. NORTH DOWN 5.1 4.4%
10. NORTH ANTRIM 5.3 4.5%
11. EAST DERRY 5.5 4.7%
12. MID ULSTER 5.6 4.8%
13. UPPER BANN 7.0 6.0%
14. WEST TYRONE 7.3 6.2%
15. FOYLE 7.6 6.5%
16. BELFAST WEST 8.1 6.9%
17. BELFAST EAST 15.8 1.4%
18. BELFAST SOUTH 25.7 21.9%*
TOTAL 117.2

*Percentages will not total 100 as there is a small
undetermined factor

Table 3 gives sorted figures by planned investment for each
parliamentary constituency. The constituencies with the
least amount of financial assistance and planned investment
are placed first.



1. SOUTH DOWN 4.2 0.9%
2. STRANGFORD 5.4 1.2%
3. LAGAN VALLEY 5.8 1.2%
4. NEWRY AND ARMAGH 8.5 1.8%
5. EAST DERRY 11.0 2.3%
6. EAST ANTRIM 12.6 2.7%
7. SOUTH ANTRIM 15.1 3.2%
8. NORTH DOWN 15.2 3.2%
10. BELFAST NORTH 24.9 5.3%
11. MID ULSTER 25.6 5.5%
12. BELFAST WEST 26.6 5.7%
13. FOYLE 27.3 5.8%
14. NORTH ANTRIM 31.3 6.7%
15. UPPER BANN 32.0 6.8%
16. WEST TYRONE 35.7 7.6%
17. BELFAST EAST 59.6 12.7%
18. BELFAST SOUTH 106.6 22.8%*
TOTAL 468.2

*Percentages will not total 100 as there is a small
undetermined factor

Table 4 details the total actual investment and planned
investment in the 5 border counties in comparison to the
most heavily financed constituency of South Belfast. The
figures speak for themselves but essentially investment is
being directed to an already well-off constituency.



SOUTH DOWN 1.2 4.2
WEST TYRONE 7.3 35.7
FOYLE 7.6 27.3
TOTAL 22.5 (19.2%) 91.8 (19.6%)

BELFAST SOUTH 25.7 (21.9%) 106.6 (22.8%)

Table 5 is the total spend and planned spend West of the
Bann, again the figures speak for themselves.



EAST DERRY 5.5 11.0
MID ULSTER 5.6 25.6
WEST TYRONE 7.3 35.7
FOYLE 7.6 27.3
TOTAL 32.4 (27.6%) 124.2 (26.5%)
OVERALL TOTAL 117.2 468.2


UUP Says Funding Imbalance Hits All Communities
2005-07-15 17:10:05

The Ulster Unionist Party has hit back at Sinn Féin claimed
that certain Catholic areas are not receiving a fair share
of investment funding.

UUP Cllr Derek Hussey said unionists living in the west of
Northern Ireland suffer as much as anyone due to

Cllr Hussey said: "The loss of 185 jobs yesterday in
Strabane textile firm, Adira, proves beyond doubt that the
area is need of a much-needed economic boost. This lack of
investment impacts on not just the people Mitchell
McLaughlin represents but on everybody who lives in these

"His discriminatory comments have laid bare the sectarian
and exclusive nature of the party he is a member of."

Today the North's Federation of Small Businesses said it
was seeking an urgent meeting with Invest Northern Ireland
about the imbalance in its investment in border areas and
west of the Bann.


Teenager Raped While At Bonfire

A teenage girl has been raped at a bonfire in Newtownabbey
on the outskirts of Belfast.

Police have only just released details of the attack which
happened in the Ballyduff estate on Tuesday morning.

Detectives investigating the incident said they wanted to
speak to a group of men.

Earlier this week, police said a 30-year-old woman had also
been raped at a bonfire on the Clandeboye Road in Bangor in
County Down.

Police have said there was a large crowd at the Bangor
bonfire and they have appealed for anyone who witnessed the
assault to contact them.

The attacker was wearing a red T-shirt and had either
gelled or greased hair.

Story from BBC NEWS:
Published: 2005/07/15 16:36:59 GMT


Residents Slam 'Disgraceful Sight'

Friday 15th July 2005

RESIDENTS in the Edenmore Road area of Limavady say they
were deeply annoyed by the debris left following the
eleventh night in the town.

One local woman who lives nearby, but did not wish to be
named, said there was so much broken glass in the area that
it was a safety hazard.

The resident said: "On the morning of the 12th I walked
from my house to the shop at the end of the Edenmore Road
and I couldn't believe the mess I saw.

"There was broken glass everywhere, along with all sorts of
empty cans and other general rubbish like wrappers and
things and one of the bonfires was still smoking away.

"I saw some people had come out of their houses to try and
brush up the mess that had been made and it's deeply unfair
that many people who were not involved in the celebrations,
and therefore had nothing to do with the mess, were left to
tidy up what was a disgraceful sight."

The woman added that it was particularly dangerous for any
children in the area.

She added: "I certainly wouldn't have wanted young members
of my family in the area that morning, there was glass
everywhere and it was very dangerous.

"All you could hear was the crunch of broken glass as cars
drove down the road, I'm surprised no-one was left with a
flat tyre.

"On the eleventh night it was intimidating that residents
were forced to drive through Artigarvan rather then face
the drunks and general mayhem in the Edenmore Road area,
and then to find the place in such a state the next morning
was totally unacceptable.

"We all understand that the eleventh night is a celebration
for certain sections of our community but I think they
should show some respect for the area were they are
partying and they should try and leave the place in a
decent state rather than the hazardous mess that confronted
residents on Tuesday morning."

Sinn Fein MLA Francie Brolly said: "This is a general
problem around this time of year, I've heard people in
Belfast complaining about the state of their parks
following bonfires. The issue of bonfires and the debris
left behind needs to be looked at.

"For a start, I think even those who support eleventh night
bonfires, should realise that siting one on the Edenmore
Road, so near to houses, is not a good idea.

"The Edenmore Road is becoming a black spot in Limavady.
The problem seems to be that it is looked upon as a place
where people can do what they want, where they can hang
flags even if they don't live there, where they can hold
bonfires and make as much mess as they like, and it is the
long suffering residents who have to live with it.

"Obviously we in Sinn Fein support the residents, but they
need to stand up together and say that enough is enough,
and they also vitally need the support of local Unionist


Orange Leaders 'Knew About Talks'

By Chris Thornton
15 July 2005

Orange leaders knew about and approved the controversial
talks that led to the Londonderry Twelfth parade, an Orange
clergyman said today.

Rev Brian Kennaway said members of Grand Lodge, the Order's
central leadership, "had already approved of and
encouraged" the talks with residents' groups in Londonderry
and Belfast - even though the talks were later criticised
by the Order's Grand Master.

The Derry talks led to the first Twelfth gathering in the
city for 13 years, but Grand Master Robert Saulters and his
deputy, Rev Stephen Dickinson, criticised the meetings when
they were made public two weeks ago.

They also singled out Mr Kennaway - the former convenor of
the Order's education committee and a critic of Orange
disciplinary procedures - accusing him of "public
interference" in the issue. Mr Kennaway had given a
television interview about the talks.

Mr Kennaway issued today's statement after writing to Mr
Saulters about the decision to name him in the statement,
which he described as violating a "fundamental principle of
Orangeism" against injuring brethren. He said he decided to
go public because Mr Saulters has not responded to his

In their July 1 statement, Mr Saulters and Mr Dickinson
said they were "dismayed" by the reports of talks involving
Orangemen and residents in Derry and Belfast.

They said they were "disturbed" by the meetings, and
"regret that members got involved in such meetings".

In his statement, Mr Kennaway said it was "an undeniable
fact" that Orange leaders were aware of the meetings.

He added that "the Senior Officers of Grand Lodge had
already approved of and encouraged such talks".

Mr Kennaway did not elaborate, but sources have told the
Belfast Telegraph that the meetings were raised at a Grand
Lodge meeting in June.

An Orange Order spokeswoman said today that the Order had
no comment on Mr Kennaway's statement.

She said Mr Saulters had received Mr Kennaway's letter,
adding: "The matter will be dealt with internally."


Derry Sets Model For Parades, Says Hain

By Clare Weir
15 July 2005

Londonderry has been praised by Secretary of State Peter
Hain as a model for dialogue on contentious parades.

The deal reached to allow the Orange Order to march without
opposition through the Diamond on the Twelfth meant that
all of the Loyal Orders had secured agreement on
contentious marches in Derry.

Mr Hain made the comments as politicians in the House of
Commons discussed the fallout of riotous behaviour
following several flashpoint marches on the Twelfth.

He praised the people of the city who "got together and
found a way through to a process" adding that: "Dialogue is
the way forward on all these things."

Mr Hain was responding to a question from East Belfast MP
Peter Robinson concerning violence on the same night in
Ardoyne. The Secretary of State said that while he shared
Mr Robinson's concerns, it was still imperative to get
around the talks table.

"I look to the model of Londonderry," he said.

"The people of Derry got together and found a way through
to a process in which the Orangemen were able to parade in
accordance with their historic traditions, and at the same
time the community felt comfortable with that. Dialogue is
the way forward on all these things."

He said that the trouble in Ardoyne was "regrettable and
unacceptable violence" but was an "isolated incident in a
marching season of about 3,000 parades which were
overwhelmingly peaceful".

Foyle MP Mark Durkan, praising his predecessor John Hume,
asked if the Secretary of State acknowledged that the model
that he referred to in Derry was an "important and
valuable" one.

The SDLP leader said: "It was first initiated in dialogue
convened many years ago by John Hume as MP, brought forward
by mayors of the city and most importantly in recent years
taken forward by a credible non-partisan community interest
such as the chamber of commerce."


Plea For Justice For Loyalist Feud Victim

The loyalist gang who shot dead a man in front of his
girlfriend must not be shielded from the law, the SDLP said

Deputy Mayor of Belfast Pat Convery appealed for
information after meeting the grieving family of Craig

The 20-year-old was gunned down by three Ulster Volunteer
Force men in his north Belfast home on Monday.

SDLP leader Mark Durkan yesterday urged to the Government
to review the UVF ceasefire after the brutal killing.

Mr Convery today urged the local community to help bring
the murder gang to justice.

He said: "Craig McCausland was gunned down in his family

"His partner - as well as children - were in the house at
the time. His partner struggled in vain to keep him alive.

"An awful trauma has been visited on his family. They have
suffered a dreadful loss.

"I cannot accept that in Belfast paramilitaries can march
into people`s homes and kill them without a word being said
- as if this was not an issue."

Mr Convery said the UVF had murdered four people in the
last two years and almost killed a fifth person in January.

He added: "The UVF cannot be allowed to believe that they
can kill with impunity while everybody else pretends that
they are on ceasefire.

"That is why I am appealing to anybody with any information
on who carried out this callous murder to come forward.

"It is vital that everybody works together to bring the
killers to justice.

"What people need is the rule of law - not the law of the

"It is the only way that we will get a Belfast where we can
get all the paramilitaries off our backs and all our
communities off their knees."

It had been claimed Mr McCausland was not a member of one
of the organisations involved in the loyalist power

Police said at the time Mr McCausland was killed by the UVF
who believed he was a member of the rival Loyalist
Volunteer Force.

But detectives investigating the murder were not convinced
he was a member of the LVF and the organisation said he was

Mr McCausland was shot several times after three men broke
into his Dhu Varren Park home.

He lived with his girlfriend, who is in her mid-20s, her
nine-year-old son and six-year-old daughter, all of whom
were in the house at the time.

Police branded the killing a "ruthless execution" which was
believed to have been carried out after a man was shot and
seriously injured while he was out walking his dogs.

The LVF was said to be behind that attack.

Earlier this month loyalist paramilitaries were blamed for
the murder of Jameson Lockhart, also from north Belfast,
who was shot as he drove a lorry in east Belfast.

The UVF was also linked to that killing.


Drunken Thugs Spoiling Inishowen Beauty Spots

By Ian Cullen
Friday 15th July 2005

LAGER LOUTS hanging out at beauty spots in Inishowen are
destroying family days out, it's been claimed.

Parents from both Derry and Donegal have contacted the
'Journal' with complaints of intimidation and even
threatening behaviour at the hands of teenagers in the
peninsula in recent weeks.

A number of complaints have also been received about people
littering the peninsula's beaches and the dangers posed by
broken glass bottles.

One Derry visitor to Buncrana told the 'Journal' yesterday
that he was threatened after telling a group of drinking
teenagers to stop breaking bottles and throwing litter on
the ground at Ned's Point a few weeks ago.

He claimed that the youngsters, some of whom he believed to
be underage drinkers, were also witnessed urinating in full
view of children and shouting abuse at passers-by.

"It's getting to the point where people won't be able to
take their families out to these places for a day out.
"There were people there with young children and they felt
intimidated by the antisocial carry on of these louts. One
man who was on his own even asked us to stay close by
because he felt he would be attacked by the large group of
drunken hooligans."

He said that he witnessed young people engaging in "loutish
behaviour" at the same spot on two separate recent Sunday
outings to the area.

He said that on the first occasion the Gardai were notified
and officers arrived on the scene and confiscated bottles
of alcohol. However, he claimed that as soon as the Gardai
had gone the youngsters carried on with their anti-social
antics and he was forced to call them again. "I'd like to
know if their parents knew they were behaving like this,"
he said.

A local school teacher told the 'Journal' that gangs of
youths drinking at Kinnego beach had ruined his family's
outing recently.

He said he and his young children felt intimidated by
groups of drinking youths who simply discarded their empty
cans and bottles on the ground.

"For families it wasn't the usual scene on a Donegal beach.

"Walking across the beach I picked up the bottom of a
broken bottle.

"Going down to the water with my wee boy the first thing I
did was to fish out a bottle from the water's edge, going
up the beach with it I lifted squashed beer cannes which
littered the place.

"Looking around we noticed lots of drinkers the full length
of the beach. There weren't all together but in different
sized groups, of say four to five and up to 12 or so.

"There was the usual mix of families on the beach but to be
honest most were subdued because of the groups of
drinkers," he added.

Gardai declined to comment on any particular reports but a
spokesman said they had powers to confiscate alcohol from
underage drinkers and to take action under anti litter


Sinn Féin Candidate Spent Most In March Elections

Frank McNally

Sinn Féin had the highest spend for any individual
candidate in the March byelections, according to figures
published yesterday by the Standards in Public Office

Expenses for Cllr Joe Reilly, Sinn Féin's representative in
the Meath poll, totalled €37,499, just ahead of the €37,136
spent by the successful candidate, Fine Gael's Shane

Mr McEntee won the seat on the fourth count, beating Fianna
Fáil's Shane Cassells by 3,000 votes after the elimination
of Cllr Reilly and Labour candidate Cllr Dominic Hannigan.

The winner of the Kildare North byelection, Independent
Catherine Murphy, was only the fifth-largest spending
candidate in her constituency.

Ms Murphy spent only €16,398, while Labour's Paddy McNamara
was the biggest spender with €25,215.

Ms Murphy finished 2,000 votes ahead of Fianna Fáil's Áine
Brady on the final count.

Ms Brady was the second-biggest spender in the constituency
at €25,045.

The total expenditure in the two elections was €321,767.25.
This was made up of €189,738.19 in Meath and €132,029.06 in
Kildare North.

However, none of the 15 candidates exceeded the allowable
spending limit, which in Meath was €38,092.14 and in
Kildare North €25,394.76.

The limits are based on the number of seats in each Dáil
constituency - the euro equivalent of IR£30,000 for a five-
seater and IR£20,000 for a three-seater.

Candidates and their agents are subject to financial
penalties if they exceed the limit, and in some cases the
election result can be overturned.

The figures relate only to spending on goods, property or
services used during the official campaign, which ran from
February 15th to March 11th.

Donations totalling €3,600 were disclosed by three of the
13 beaten candidates.

Senator Kate Walsh (PD, Kildare North) accounted for the
largest amount, €1,800, while Ms Brady (FF, Kildare) and
Liam Ó Gógáin (non-party, Meath) disclosed gifts of €1,000
and €800 respectively.

The 10 other defeated candidates all said they had not
received any donations valued at more than €634.87.

As TDs, the winning candidates will be required to furnish
a statement next January of donations received during 2005.

A total of €69,835.59 will be paid by the Exchequer to 11
candidates who qualified for a reimbursement of expenses.
Each receives the maximum reimbursement of €6,348.69.

The lowest spending candidates were Mr Ó Gógáin with
€2,401, and Sean Ó Coistín (non-party, Kildare) with €243.


Berkeley Daily Planet
Edition Date: Friday, July 15, 2005

Commentary: Bobby Sands And Akbar Ganji

By Homayon

Over two decades ago Bobby Sands, a member of the IRA, was
arrested and put in jail by the British government. He
later went on a hunger strike demanding to be freed.
Margaret Thatcher, holding the British prime minister
office at the time, refused to cave in to his demand until
Sands finally died in prison as a result.

Sands' courage and stand for his belief was viewed and
praised by the newly formed Revolutionary-Theocratic regime
of the Islamic Republic of Iran. In fact at a Friday noon
prayer sermon, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei (then the president
and now the supreme leader) went on to portray Sands as a
martyr—and rightly so—and highly praised him all he could
and downgraded the British government and its political and
judiciary system all he could.

S ands, a Christian-Irish-Revolutionary became an Islamic-
Iranian-Revolutionary idol for the mullahs and soon a
street in Tehran was named "Bobby Sands Street."

Enter Akbar Ganji: a brave devout Iranian Muslim who
voluntarily joined Iran's revolutionary ar my to fight the
Iraqi army in the eight-year Iran-Iraq war. After the war
ended about 17 years ago he gradually started his own war
on tyranny by turning against the corrupt power-hungry
rulers of the current Iranian regime and opening his arms
to democracy as opposed to theocracy.

Seven years ago he started a crusade to reveal the identity
of the high ranking government officials and of the Friday
noon prayer preachers, who for several years had engaged in
conducting "Mafia-like operations" murdering dozens of
political dissidents and outspoken journalists.

His daily and weekly articles in the reformist newspapers—
which sprang up in the post-election era of the reformist
President Khatami—focused on one thing and one thing only:
the so-called "chain killings" of the Iranian dissidents.
Ganji had just started his fight to strip the theocratic
tyranny of the mullahs of all its holy facade.

Over five years ago when the supreme leader labeled the
reformists' newspapers as "foreign governments' tools
against the Islamic Revolution", Ganji and many other
journalists were imprisoned. Within a couple of years all
were released. All but Ganji. He had gone too far!

During the past five years of imprisonment he evolved as a
true intellectual transcending revolutions, ideologies and
even "the chain killings." Ganji had started his new fight:
the fight to pursue a true democracy. And the only way he
knew how: non-violent, bold, transparent and relentless.

While in prison he smuggled out more articles and two
volumes of "The Manifest to Pursue Democracy," in which he
openly claims the regime of mullahs—lead by its supreme
leader—to be a tyranny. Suffering from asthma, internal
illnesses etc. he recently demanded to be released by going
on a hunger strike. He h as gone without food for 35
straight days now!

The head of the judiciary of the Islamic Republic announced
recently that Ganji's hunger strike was illegal. His memory
perhaps had failed to remind him of the time when his
appointer—the holy supreme leader—had praised Bobby Sands'
hunger strike over two decades ago. Or perhaps he was just
announcing the Islamic Republic's philosophy of existence
loud and clear: All struggles for freedom against tyranny
around the world are praised except those in Iran, except
those against the Mullah's tyranny.

Now I don't know what potion there is that makes people
like Sands and Ganji. What gives them the stamina to stand
up single handedly against tyranny and where do they get
their courage to enter the "lion's den"? Al l I know is
that Ganji may soon become Sands!

As an Iranian I used to feel proud to drive on "Bobby Sands
Street" every time I visited Tehran, but the summer of 2005
may very well make me ashamed to be an Iranian.

I don't want to go any where in the world driving on "Akbar
Ganji Street!"

Homayon is the pseudonym of a correspondent writing from


Surprises Lie Around Coastline

By Mike McKimm
BBC Northern Ireland environment correspondent

If people go down to the beaches in Northern Ireland and
look very carefully, they could be in for some big

Most people wander onto the beach more intent on finding
that perfect spot away from the screaming kids on the rug
next door.

The next expedition is usually to find the toilets or the
ice cream van. But there is plenty more to spot - often
staring you in the face.

Take the Carrick-a-Rede rope bridge on the north Antrim

It started life as an essential tool for local salmon
fishermen but has now become one of Ireland's top tourist

Each year, thousands of visitors nervously cross the
bridge, frightened even to look down into the swirling
water far below.

But the moment they step onto the wooden slats, there is an
astonishing secret right below them.

They are walking over some of what was Ireland's most
violent geological history.

The bridge is attached, not to the solid black basalt or
limestone of the area but to prehistoric compacted volcanic

Volcanic scar

The bridge spans two parts of a volcano, long extinct. If
you look down at the cliff face just below the bridge, huge
boulders known as volcanic bombs lie studded in the
compacted fine ash.

These were blasted out of the volcano along with the ash.
The explosion blew away the surrounding limestone as well,
leaving Carrick-a-Rede as a black volcanic scar on the long
run of limestone cliffs that make up this part of the

It certainly makes the crossing a lot more exciting,
especially as you have to look down to see the bombs - for
those who dare.

Keeping your feet firmly on the ground, you can enjoy the
delights of the little harbour of Ballintoy. It's a picture
book scene, snuggled up against the limestone cliffs. But
just to one side of it is the Ballintoy of thousands of
years ago.

Small curious steep hills lie between the cliffs and the
sea. A dry arch that was once hewn out by the waves stands
isolated with the water barely lapping at its base in a
high tide. But how did they get there?

When ice, a kilometre high, retreated after the last ice
age, the land began to rise and tide didn't come in as far
as it used to. The feature is known as a raised beach. But
this one had the extra attraction of small rocky outcrops
eroded by the seas of 8,000 years ago now high and dry.

Grass has invaded the fractured rock producing a strange
landscape of hummocks. It's well worth the short walk from
the harbour to explore the phenomenon.

Further afield, just north of the small Donegal village of
Rathmullan, on the shores of Lough Swilly, is the White

It's an unremarkable beach and most people drive past it
without a second glance. But a few months ago, a local man
was walking his dog on the beach and was startled to
discover the remains of a previously unknown ancient

Storms had eroded much of the sand away and revealed a
feature of the past that had been preserved for thousands
of years.

Today you can walk along the beach and see the huge roots
of trees. It's real wood, not fossilised rock. But how did
the trees get there?

One possible theory is that there was a forest of large
trees that extended far out into what is now the sea. About
8,000 years ago the sea overwhelmed the forest and the
trees died off.

At the same time the beach moved inland forming high sand
dunes and burying the remains of the trees - until today.

Sadly the feature won't be there for ever. Every high tide
is working at the wood, breaking off fragments. Marine
erosion will eventually mean any exposed timber will

Northern Ireland may not have the miles of sun-kissed
Mediterranean-style beaches but is acknowledged to have
some of the most diverse coast and geology in the world.

Even a casual exploration of the shores will throw up
everything from fossils to coral sand and it's all
absolutely free.

Story from BBC NEWS:
Published: 2005/07/15 11:05:24 GMT


Galway Arts Festival Engulfs City Of The Tribes

Lorna Siggins, Western Correspondent

Macnas mayhem, a marathon "Synge cycle", Bertolt Brecht
and Michelle Shocked engulf Galway this weekend as the
annual arts festival reaches its halfway point.

The discovery of a new country by Prof Paudi McNutt and his
band of adventurers is the subject of the Macnas parade
tomorrow afternoon. Entitled Áit Ait or "strange place",
the parade will reflect some of the strange characters and
creatures occupying this new state.

A "pope idol" float will represent the predominant
religion, based entirely on the cult of the celebrity - but
with no "priests" bearing any resemblance to Sir Robert
Geldof or Bono.

The light-hearted social commentary will involve some 500
adults and children, mainly volunteers from various
community groups.

A "little revolution" is promised at the parade's
conclusion, according to Macnas general manager John

It starts at 3pm from the Town Hall Theatre, going up
Eglinton Street, down Shop Street and by Mainguard Street
to O'Brien's Bridge and will last about 90 minutes.

The Druid Theatre stages its Irish premiere today of the
Synge cycle - a performance of six of JM Synge's seven
plays from 2pm in the Town Hall Theatre.

The company is staging two such cycles during the festival,
and two plays a night during the fortnight, before moving
to Dublin and Edinburgh next month.

Today's marathon effort will be competing with the likes of
cartoonist Joe Sacco in the Radisson Hotel this afternoon,
and Tibetan singer Yungchen Lhamo in St Nicholas's
Collegiate Church tonight.

More than 400 artists, musicians, writers and performers
have been booked for this year's 28th annual festival,which
continues throughout next week.

Programme details and bookings can be made at the Galway
Arts Festival box office in Eyre Square Shopping Centre,
tel (091)566577, and online at

© The Irish Times
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