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August 20, 2005

Hain Must Act on UVF Ceasefire

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News about Ireland & the Irish

BB 08/20/05 SDLP: Hain 'Must Act On UVF Ceasefire'
NH 08/20/05 Will To Prosecute UVF Has Been Sapped
BB 08/20/05 Officer 'Says Ahoghill Attacks Sectarian'
BT 08/20/05 Loyalist Parade Near Ahoghill Passes Quietly
BB 08/20/05 Taxi Driver Injured; Loyalist Feud Suspected
BB 08/20/05 Pair Remanded On Loyalist Extortion Charge
UT 08/20/05 Man Released In Loyalist Feud Probe
NL 08/20/05 Opin: Loyalist Paramilitaries Are Like Nazis
BT 08/20/05 SDLP In Talks On 'Partisan' Policing
BT 08/20/05 Pressure On Dublin After 'Three' Freed
BT 08/20/05 Viewpoint: C3 - No Room For Double Standards
TU 08/17/05 Catholics Urged To Reach Out In N Ireland
TU 08/15/05 Morning-After Pill For Teens OK, Says Minister
TU 08/12/05 Catholics Face Abuse Over School Merger Plan
TU 08/09/05 BBC's 'Popetown' Set For DVD Release
EN 08/20/05 Mo - Politics Practised By People With Big Egos
BB 08/20/05 Thin Lizzy's Lynott 'Back In Town


Hain 'Must Act On UVF Ceasefire'

SDLP leader Mark Durkan has accused Northern Ireland
Secretary Peter Hain of acting with "indifference" towards
the UVF ceasefire.

Mr Durkan told BBC Radio Ulster's Inside Politics
programme, the government must "stop pretending" that the
loyalist ceasefire was intact.

Mr Durkan said that Mr Hain must take action on the issue.

"What worries me is that we have the British government
evading the issue of the UVF's ceasefire," he said.

"The secretary of state (is) almost shrugging his shoulders
and saying we'll wait and see what the IMC (Independent
Monitoring Commission) say in October.

"It is the secretary of state and the secretary of state
alone who has the responsibility in terms of specifying
organisations and declaring on the status of ceasefires,
and appearing to treat murders and other criminal
activities from the UVF as though it was par for the course
in the peace process is very dangerous," he said.

Alluding to the current feud between the paramilitary UVF
and the rival LVF, Mr Durkan said he was concerned there
was "an attitude in the NIO that this is maybe a cleaning
up operation that's going on between loyalist
paramilitaries" which could be a "prelude to something more
positive advancing".

Mr Durkan added: "That is a very dangerous bit of cynicism
and I would hope that is not the motive behind what appears
to be indifference on the part of the secretary of state to
the UVF ceasefire status."

The Independent Monitoring Commission was set up by the
British and Irish governments in January 2004.

It is a crucial element in the two governments' plans for
restoring devolution, which was suspended in October 2002
amid allegations of IRA intelligence gathering at Stormont.

Story from BBC NEWS:
Published: 2005/08/20 08:23:37 GMT


Will To Prosecute UVF Has Been Sapped From The Top

(Newton Emerson, Irish News

The PSNI is sitting on a bomb and the clock is ticking.
Before this year is out the police ombudsman will publish a
report into the 1997 murder of Raymond McCord jnr. The
initial findings, which were widely leaked two years ago,
suggest that an informer in the Mount Vernon UVF has
murdered at least 13 people since his recruitment in 1993.
Special Branch is alleged to have covered up each case. The
list of victims is mostly Protestant but includes the all
too familiar roll-call of randomly selected Catholics plus
the clearly psychotic butchering of Portadown teenagers
Andrew Robb and David McIlwaine. When the report breaks the
fall-out will be spectacular. British Irish Rights Watch,
which has already presented its own confidential findings
to the American, British and Irish governments, says the
case is: "As bad as it gets."

At least one more high-ranking UVF informer is likely to be
exposed but the harshest glare will fall on those in
authority who have humoured the phantom of political
loyalism without any regard for human life. This is another
all too familiar roll-call.

Successive secretaries of state and security ministers – up
to and including the present incumbents – have persistently
refused to review the UVF 'ceasefire' despite 30 murders
since 1994. Nobody has been convicted for any of those
murders, making it absurdly obvious that both the police
and the Prosecution Service are under political

The Northern Ireland Office refused extra funding for the
ombudsman's inquiry, delaying it by two years, during which
eight of the 30 murders were committed.

The additional funding requested was £5 million – roughly
what the children's commissioner has cost over the same
period. The chief constable blocked publication of the
coroner's report into the murder of David McIlwaine on
security grounds, a move that can only have been made to
protect an informer. Everyone involved in these decisions
will shortly have to explain them in terms of a preventable
death toll exceeding that of the Omagh bomb. It is
perfectly possible to justify the use of dangerous
informers and it is far too easy to criticise the
horrendous compromises necessary when only evil people can
provide good information. Shortly after his recruitment the
Mount Vernon informer is thought to have led police to a
UVF weapons dump and doubtless supplied further useful
intelligence. Might he have saved lives overall? Former
Special Branch detective Johnston Brown – who put Johnny
Adair away only to see Mo Mowlam release him – definitely
doesn't think so.

Speaking about the case on UTV two years ago, Mr Brown
said: "Could we have put the majority of the Mount Vernon
UVF in jail in 1997, 1998, 1999? Absolutely. Lives would
have been saved time and time again. There appeared to be
no will to prosecute certain individuals."

Given the attempts at every level to frustrate Nuala
O'Loan's inquiry it seems that the will to prosecute the
UVF has been sapped from the top.

The great and the good of amoral peace processing – Number
10 policy advisor Jonathan Powell springs especially to
mind – remain determined to pursue identical policies
towards republicans and loyalists although it has been
plain for years that loyalists are not responding.

No doubt Number 10 blames working-class Protestants for not
supporting David Ervine as instructed. No doubt too this
makes the predominantly working class Protestant body count
easier to bear. But only for a little while longer. As the
UVF runs increasingly amok every unpunished outrage will
only serve to underscore that looming report. Excuses that
never washed in the first place will finally be hung out to

What are informers for if their information is never used?

Why are prosecutions withheld for lack of evidence when
informers can turn Queen's evidence – and the law was
changed after Omagh to make a senior police officer's
testimony sufficient evidence regardless?

How many loyalist murders did the NIO think were worth one
loyalist MLA?

Was it more than 30, perhaps?

How many loyalist murders did it think were worth a two-
year breather?

More than eight, apparently.

As the convenient flag of the Mount Vernon UVF now rises
above the typically elusive killers of 15-year-old Thomas
Devlin, the smell of fudge again pervades the air.

Hugh Orde, Peter Hain and Jonathan Powell need to wake up
and smell the coffee.

They have less than three months to put the UVF out of
business – before the UVF puts them out of business.


August 20, 2005

Newton Emerson is editor of the satirical website Portadown
News. (

This article appeared first in the August 18, 2005 edition
of the Irish News.


Officer 'Says Ahoghill Attacks Sectarian'

An SDLP councillor has said a senior policeman has
confirmed he believes a series of attacks in the County
Antrim village of Ahoghill are sectarian.

Declan O'Loan said Paul Leighton wrote him a letter to
clarify he believed it was the fundamental issue in the
attacks on Catholic homes.

Earlier this week, the deputy chief constable said disputes
among neighbours could also be to blame.

Mr O'Loan, a councillor in Ballymena, said he welcomed the

"He's quite clear in what he says - he says there's no
question that the attacks are all of a sectarian nature,"
he said.

"He does go on to say that only in some do other lesser
factors feature."

Mr O'Loan said he wondered "why there was such a delay in
making this response".

He added: "The clarity in his statement is the important
thing, and I very much welcome that."

Church attacked

The latest attacks came on Monday, when a Catholic church
and school were splattered with paint, the same night as an
attack on a Catholic couple's home.

Mr Leighton met local officers on Wednesday to discuss a
series of sectarian attacks in County Antrim.

On Friday, Mr O'Loan was part of an SDLP delegation which
raised the issue of loyalist violence with government
minister Lord Rooker.

Speaking afterwards, North Antrim assembly member Sean
Farren said the party's "message to the minister was the
loyalist ceasefires no longer have any credibility".

Story from BBC NEWS:
Published: 2005/08/20 09:45:39 GMT


Loyalist Parade Near Ahoghill Passes Quietly

By Nevin Farrell
20 August 2005

A PARADE in a tension-filled mainly nationalist Co Antrim
village passed off peacefully last night as dozens of
loyalist bands marched just a few miles from Ahoghill where
under-siege Catholics came under further attack this week.

The soaring sectarian temperature in north Antrim this
summer simmered further as last night's march by
Ballymaconnelly Sons of Conquerors Flute Band was greeted
with a 60-strong official protest by nationalists in

At least 20 police jeeps swarmed the area, some fitted with
camera recording equipment, and it is understood water
cannon was on standby.

Ballymaconnelly's march had been looked at by the Parades
Commission who imposed no overall restrictions but warned
that no paramilitary flags should be displayed.

Nationalists had expressed concern at emblems which
appeared during last year's parade.

Ballymaconnelly applied for 46 bands and 1,250 participants
to march in the village.

A band spokesperson said the parade is an annual event to
express Protestant culture.

A residents' spokesperson said the protest was against "a
sectarian parade with loyalist bands".


Taxi Driver Injured In Gun Attack

A taxi driver has been injured in a gun attack in County

The man was in his vehicle at Stirling Avenue, Newtownards,
when he was shot at 0030 BST on Saturday. He is said to be
in a stable condition in hospital.

An area close to the town's bus depot and a furniture shop
car park have been cordoned off and are being examined.

It is understood police are looking at the possibility the
shooting may be linked to the current loyalist feud, but
other motives are being examined.

The feud between the Ulster Volunteer Force and Loyalist
Volunteer Force has claimed four lives.

'Heinous crime'

Local people said they heard up to five shots, however, it
is not known how many times the man was shot, or the extent
of his injuries.

He is being treated at the Ulster Hospital in Dundonald.

The vehicle is still at the scene of the shooting in the
Westwinds estate.

Politicians said the town had been tense in recent weeks
with a visible police and Army presence on the streets of

Strangford DUP MP Iris Robinson described it as a heinous

She added: "This shooting is deplorable and must be

"There is no justification for this type of behaviour.
Anyone who has information should assist the police."

Story from BBC NEWS:
Published: 2005/08/20 10:19:18 GMT


Pair Remanded On Extortion Charge

Two east Belfast men have been remanded in custody on
extortion charges. Both were arrested on Thursday near to a
shopping centre.

David Alexander Bennett, 29, and Robert Lowey, 28, both of
Frazer Pass, were accused of claiming to be UVF members.

They were also charged with demanding money with menaces,
and with receiving money contrary to the Terrorism Act.

Mr Lowey faced an additional charge of having a pistol and
ammunition. Both men pleaded not guilty to all charges.

They were remanded in custody until 16 September.

Story from BBC NEWS:
Published: 2005/08/20 11:14:47 GMT

David Alexander Bennet, who is 30, and 28 year old Robert
Lowey, who are both from Frazer`s Pass in Belfast, deny
trying to extort an undisclosed sum of cash from an
undercover police officer.

They also deny membership of the UVF, blackmail and
receiving money for the purposes of terrorism.

Lowey denies a further charge of possessing a handgun and


Man Released In Loyalist Feud Probe

A man arrested in connection with a murder linked to the
bitter loyalist feud has been released without charge.

By:Press Association

Craig McCausland, 20, was shot at his girlfriend`s house in
north Belfast last month. He died later in hospital.

The PSNI confirmed a man was questioned in connection with
the case but has since been released.

The loyalist Ulster Volunteer Force is suspected of
carrying out the murder as part of its feud with the
splinter Loyalist Volunteer Force.

The UVF is thought to have carried out all four murders in
the feud the latest on Monday - in a bid to wipe-out its


Opin: Paramilitaries Are Like Nazis

Saturday 20th August 2005

ONCE again at a time when unionism/loyalism should be
united in calling for action from Sinn Fein/IRA in regards
to criminality and decommisioning it is so-called loyalism
that has let them off the hook. There was indignation, and
rightly so, when one leader in the Republic compared
loyalists to Nazis. I was one of those outraged at the
statement, but what do I see now?

Churches desecrated, peaceful people being forced from
their homes and schools being attacked. It seems the only
thing missing is the call for them to wear the yellow Star
of David when out on the streets.

Yes all right-minded loyalist leaders are calling for
police action against these mindless idiots. But they live
in our commnuities; they live next door to some of us; they
may even hang about with our children. What are we doing?

I am sick of hearing of attacks on Roman Catholics who have
lived among their Protestant neighbours for years. The IRA
are off the front pages and news and now all I hear are
about these attacks.

I am not interested in one's religious views on the Roman
Catholic Church and people arguing forward and backward
about their own Biblical positions. These attacks on
religious and educational institutions in our communities
and on our neighbours must stop. Those from High Kirk
Presbyterian Church in Ballymena should be applauded for
showing the true face of Christianity in their response.

Fred Douglas, Harryville, Ballymena


SDLP In Talks On 'Partisan' Policing

By Sarah Brett
20 August 2005

THE SDLP in Limavady are to meet police chiefs after
branding them partisan in their treatment of the town's
flags problem.

Councillor Gerry Mullan said he wants to clear up the
"obvious inequalities" in how the flags issue in the town
is being dealt with by the PSNI.

His party are expected to reiterate demands for all
loyalist flags to be removed from street lights and other
public property.

Next week's meeting with Chief Superintendent Michael
Rankin follows the controversial removal of tricolours by
police in a mixed area of the town before a loyalist band
parade on Wednesday.

"Now that the PSNI have removed tricolours from other parts
of the town there is an inconsistency which must be cleared
up in relation to the persistent refusal of the police to
acknowledge the damage to community relations which
loyalist flags are causing on the Edenmore Road," said Mr


Pressure On Dublin After 'Three' Freed

By Noel McAdam, Political Correspondent
20 August 2005

NEW questions over the potential extradition of the
Colombia Three arose last night as unionists attempted to
maintain pressure on the Irish government.

With the trio released after questioning by Gardai, the DUP
again voiced doubts over the will of the Dublin political
and security administration to take firm action.

The Irish government meanwhile reiterated its commitment to
meet any international legal obligations and said the
Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions would also be
examining any breach of Irish law.

Minister of State Conor Lenihan emphasised the government
had no advance knowledge of the return of Niall Connolly
(40), James Monaghan (59) and Martin McAuley (43) and the
issue had not arisen in discussions with Sinn Fein "or
anyone else".

But the DUP said the release of the three from Gardai
custody had focused attention on whether the Republic has
the will to do other than provide sanctuary.

Outside of the EU, Ireland has formal extradition
arrangements only with the United States and Australia. And
there are a number of other countries with which Ireland
has reached various forms of international conventions,
which could include extradition arrangements.

Colombian vice-president Francisco Santos has made clear he
would want the trio extradited but has not ruled out
allowing them to serve their sentences in Ireland.

DUP MEP Jim Allister said: "As our Extradition Act in the
UK demonstrates the existence of an extradition treaty with
the requesting country is not a pre-requisite to handing
over convicted terrorists.

"Legislation, as ours does, can provide for special
requests. Dublin could pass such legislation. Moreover, if
the Republic had the will to act against these men it is
not without powers."

Sinn Fein Assembly member Catrionia Ruane, who lead the
Bring Them Home campaign, said the case has been subject of
much inaccurate comment from the time of their arrest in
Colombia over four years ago.

"Despite the very blatant efforts of the Colombian military
to influence the judge, an open court found them innocent
of the serious charges which they faced," she said.

"The judge dismissed the evidence of the two prosecution
witnesses and recommended that they be investigated for
perjury. There was no forensic evidence linking the men to
the charges."


Viewpoint: No Room For Double Standards

COLOMBIA THREE: The Irish government must be consistent

20 August 2005

Not for the first time, the issue of extradition is
creating difficulty for the Dublin Government. In the
fraught days of the 1970s, it was the Republic's refusal to
return IRA suspects to Northern Ireland which was the
problem, and now it is the absence of a treaty with
Colombia which is in sharp focus.

Certainly, the arrival back in Ireland of the Colombia
Three provides the stiffest test to date of the Dublin
Government's commitment to the battle against international
terrorism. So far, the evidence is not compelling. Bertie
Ahern and his colleagues appear to be treating the three
fugitives with kid gloves.

This is a scenario that will concern but not surprise
unionists. For years, the Irish Government seemed to view
the IRA in a slightly different light to other terrorist

Today there is no room for any equivocation. The world
changed on 9/11 and any terrorist grouping which puts its
head above the parapet anywhere in the civilised world can
expect to be treated with the same contempt as al-Qaida.

It is in light of this new situation that the Irish
Government's handling of the Colombian Three is being
scrutinised, not just by unionists but by the wider world.
Either Dublin is 100% committed to the fight against
terrorism or it is not - there is no room for double

And yet as the Dublin Government continues to dither, it
seems doubtful whether the three fugitives will be returned
to Colombia or even required to serve the remainder of
their sentence in an Irish jail.

The stage-managed decision by the Colombia Three to break
cover and present themselves to the Garda - only to be
released pending preparation of a file for the DPP -
suggests that the trio need have no fear of being deprived
of their freedom.

Despite the issuing of an Interpol warrant, the Colombia
Three appear to have got off the hook. This development
should cause major embarrassment in Dublin and should also
impel the Government to overhaul its extradition policy.

The setting in place of reciprocal agreements with
democratic countries around the world has taken on a new

During these troubled times, governments which are
committed to democracy need to pull together to ensure that
fugitives cannot shelter behind their borders. If the
civilised world is to triumph, there can be no safe havens
for anyone involved in terrorism - of any nationality.


Priest Urges Catholic To Reach Out In Northern Ireland

Aug 17, 2005

A priest who has been a prime mover in the Northern Ireland
peace process has this week appealed to Catholics to reach
out now to a frightened Unionist community.

As efforts were stepped up to reignite the Ulster peace
process in the wake of the IRA announcement of the end of
its armed struggle, Fr Alec Reid, the Redemptorist priest
who for 30 years worked for reconciliation, said now was
the time for the Catholic community to offer hope to
Unionists that they have nothing to fear.

His call came on the heels of a similarly significant
conciliatory statement by All Ireland Primate Archbishop
Sean Brady, who asked for Catholics to respect the
religious character of loyal order marches.

Archbishop Brady said the Church regarded freedom of
conscience as "one of the highest goods and one of the most
serious duties of every person who truly wishes to ensure
the good of the individual and society," but said Catholics
were not always sufficiently aware of this duty of respect
in their view of the religious aspect of Orange parades.

Orange Order chiefs immediately applauded the archbishop's


Morning-After Pill For Teens OK, Says Minister

Aug 15, 2005

A NORTHERN Ireland-based family doctor and author has
accused an Irish government minister of encouraging illegal
sexual activity after Mary Harney issued a statement saying
the morning-after pill should be made available to 11-year-
old girls.

The Irish Health Minister stunned pro-life and family
groups when she made the statement, which was in response
to a report from Ireland's Crisis Pregnancy Agency which
claimed 11 to 12-year olds are increasingly becoming
sexually active and regularly seeking the morning after


Catholic Children Face Abuse Over Merger Plan For Primary

Aug 12, 2005

Pupils at a Roman Catholic primary are facing sectarian
abuse because of moves by the local council to close their
school, according to a report in The Scotsman.

The youngsters, who attend Greyfriars Primary School in St
Andrews, have been targeted by pupils from non-
denominational schools in the town.

Fife Council has launched a consultation exercise on the
future of Greyfriars.

One option is to close the school, which was built in the
1880s, and merge it with the non-denominational Canongate

The second option is to demolish another of St Andrews'
three non-Catholic schools and build a new Greyfriars
Primary on the site.

Henry Paul, the chairman of the school board, said
Greyfriars pupils attending a summer play scheme had come
in for abuse because of the plans. He said: "Some adults
have already accused Greyfriars of trying to take over or
replace their school. Our pupils have also been verbally
abused at summer camp about Greyfriars 'stealing' their
school. It has been very distressing to say the least.

"At the moment, we have a very successful school at our
current site, and all that is going to happen is that this
will lead to a sectarian divide that we don't need in the
east of Scotland."

Greyfriars has a school roll of around 200 and at the
moment is 93 per cent full.

However, Mr Paul said that if it merged with Canongate
Primary, the new school would be running at 130 per cent

Greyfriars parents now plan to mount a campaign protesting
at the council's plans.

Roger Stewart, Fife Council's head of education, said:
"Greyfriars is an old building and it would cost a lot of
money to bring it up to 21st century standard."

And he added: "We will be looking at the condition and
suitability of all the schools in St Andrews."


BBC's 'Popetown' Set For DVD Release

Aug 9, 2005

Popetown, the cartoon satire about the Vatican that proved
too hot - or too unfunny - for the BBC to handle last year,
was last night said to be being released as a DVD by a
private company.

According to a report in the Guardian, the 10-part
programme, originally commissioned in 2002, which features
an infantile, pogostick-wielding pontiff voiced by the
comedienne Ruby Wax, provoked the wrath of many British
Catholics, including the church's hierarchy, in an
orchestrated campaign to secure its cancellation.

Bishop Joseph Devine of Motherwell declared the series,
which he had not seen, as "an irreverent, gratuitous and
publicly funded attack on [the] faith."

The complainants were particularly outraged that the show
had been commissioned at a cost of about £2m. Some took it
as a sign of the BBC's alleged anti-Catholic bias, even
though the director general, Mark Thompson, is a Catholic.

The BBC eventually announced that it would not show the
series - on the grounds that it was not good enough. A
spokesman last night said that the BBC was not involved in
the release, which is being handled by a company called

Popetown's director, Phil Ox, insisted the DVD would go on
sale next month and branded Catholics who found it
offensive as evil. He said: "I am glad that it is finally
out there. I should just remind everybody that viewing this
show can destroy your soul."


'Politics Is Practised By People, Most Of Them With Big

THE death of former Northern Ireland Secretary Mo Mowlam
has prompted a host of tributes to a woman whose down-to-
earth style, sense of fun and unconventional approach made
her one of Britain's most popular politicians.

She is said to have been in the habit of taking off her wig
to break the tension at negotiations leading up to the Good
Friday Agreement. And she is also reported to have called
Sinn Fein leader Martin McGuinness "babe" during a
telephone conversation.

She took brave risks for the sake of peace in Northern
Ireland and was credited with advancing the peace process,
despite criticism from the Unionist camp.

But it is said her political fate was sealed when she
upstaged Tony Blair without even trying. When the Prime
Minister praised her work in Northern Ireland and referred
to her as "our Mo" in his speech to the 1998 Labour
conference, delegates rose to their feet in a prolonged
standing ovation, leaving Mr Blair embarrassed. The
following year she was replaced in Northern Ireland by Mr
Blair's closest ally Peter Mandelson.

She later wrote a book in which she claimed Mr Blair's
chief aides had orchestrated a whispering campaign against
her in an attempt to ruin her political career.

But despite the obvious bitterness of the complaint, the
Prime Minister was one of the first to pay tribute to Ms
Mowlam, describing her as "one of the most remarkable and
colourful personalities" ever to enter politics.

The fulsome appreciation was in contrast to the Prime
Minister's more muted tribute to Robin Cook when he died a
fortnight ago and the apparent snub when he failed to
interrupt his holiday to attend the former Foreign
Secretary's funeral in St Giles' Cathedral.

The attack made on Mr Blair from the cathedral pulpit by Mr
Cook's friend, racing tipster John McCririck, was out of
place, but the thrust of the criticism clearly struck a
chord with many members of the public. And the Prime
Minister's promise to attend a memorial service in London
at a future date hardly makes up for his ill-judged absence
from the funeral.

Mr Cook had profound disagreements of principle with Mr
Blair, not least over the Iraq war, and it may not be
surprising that Mr Blair should not be seen as his number
one fan.

But the deaths of two such outspoken politicians as Ms
Mowlam and Mr Cook, so close together, serves to highlight
the tensions and undercurrents which affect all political

Tony Benn, the elder statesman of the left, always insists
politics should not be about personalities and perhaps in
general it shouldn't. But politics is practised by people,
most of them with big egos, and clashes of personality are
every bit as certain as disagreements on policy.

Sometimes the closest political friendships are formed
between people in opposing parties, while deep personal
hostilities between individuals supposedly on the same side
can be hidden beneath a necessary facade of party unity.

Chancellor Gordon Brown had patched up his differences with
Mr Cook and was able to deliver a moving and eloquent
eulogy at the funeral service.

And the long-running tensions between Mr Brown and Mr Blair
were famously put to one side for the general election
campaign earlier this year, when the pair toured the
country as a double act.

Ted Heath and Margaret Thatcher never patched up their
differences. When Sir Edward died in July, Lady Thatcher
was among the mourners at the funeral, but one cannot help
wondering if her presence would really have been welcomed
by her predecessor.

Do you disagree with our views or have anything to say on
the issues of today? To contact us tel: 0131 620 8692 or


Thin Lizzy's Lynott 'Back In Town

A statue commemorating one of Ireland's greatest ever
musicians has been unveiled in Dublin.

Phil Lynott finally returned to 'The Old Town' when the
memorial was erected off the city's busy Grafton Street.

Phil, 34, died of heart failure in a Wiltshire clinic in
January 1986 after years of battling drug addiction.

Many of the rock legend's friends and fellow musicians
turned up to see the memorial to the former Thin Lizzy

The sculpture, by Paul Daly, was cast in bronze by Leo

Phil's mother Philomena, who unveiled the statue, said: "It
is the proudest day in my life. For over 20 years I have
been looking forward to it.

"I am happy with the statue, I love it, I spent many days
down at the foundry advising him. We walked in a few times
and we took a chisel out to make sure he got his chin

She added: "I love him forever and I will miss him forever.
Life is awful without him but knowing all these people are
loving him the way they do, they are like a big woolly
cloak around me.

"They write to me telling me how much they love him and
miss him. I am not alone in missing him."

Phil was born in Birmingham, but brought up in the Crumlin
area of Dublin.

A tribute concert is taking place on Saturday at Dublin's
Point Theatre featuring former bandmates and friends - Gary
Moore, Eric Bell, Brian Downey, Scott Gorham, Brian
Robertson and Brush Shiels.

Saturday would have been Phil's 56th birthday.

Story from BBC NEWS:
Published: 2005/08/20 09:05:05 GMT

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