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August 10, 2005

Loyalists Terrorising Catholics

News about Ireland & the Irish

BT 08/10/05 Police Round Up Loyalist Terrorising Catholics
BT 08/10/05 Harryville Paint-Bomb Target
BT 08/10/05 Ex-UDR Soldiers 'Quizzed On GAA Murder'
BT 08/10/05 Brit/Irish Rights Watch Apr-June Report
BT 08/10/05 New Jail Threat To Colombia Three
BT 08/10/05 Extremists Who Are Deported Will Be Tortured
BT 08/10/05 Dissidents Blamed For Bomb Attack Bid
IO 08/10/05 Bogside Call Off Protest Against Loyalist
BT 08/10/05 Loyalists Stage Protest Over March
UN 08/10/05 SF & SDLP Criticise Internment March
BT 08/10/05 Tense Night In Ballymena After Republican March
BT 08/10/05 Ulster To Get Secret Courts


Ahoghill Families Fear For Their Lives

Police Urged To Round Up Loyalist Thugs Terrorising

By Brian Hutton
10 August 2005

The DUP last night claimed that police know who is behind a
campaign of sectarian violence in Co Antrim.

Five Catholic families in the predominantly Protestant
village of Ahoghill were yesterday issued with fire
blankets and smoke alarms after police feared they could be
the next victims of loyalist attacks.

A number of Catholic homes and churches in the area have
already been targeted.

DUP North Antrim MLA Mervyn Storey insisted that he was
doing all he could to stop attacks and called on police to
act on their information.

"The police need to focus in on their intelligence as to
who they believe may be responsible for these threats and
move against them. I'd say the police have a fair idea as
to where these threats are coming from," he added.

A police spokeswoman last night said intelligence suggested
that further attacks were being planned, but she declined
to say whether police knew who was behind the violence.

She said: "Police decided to take the tangible steps of
issuing residents with advice and equipment which would be
of use if any other incidents should occur.

"We would stress that there is no intelligence that attacks
are planned against specific individuals who have received
advice or equipment."

Police have also stepped up patrols in Ahoghill, which is
believed to have around a dozen Catholic households.

SDLP Ballymena councillor Declan O'Loan described the
development as "unprecedented" and a reflection of the
seriousness of the threat.

"The only real form of protection the nationalist people of
Ahoghill need is to stop having their lives and livelihoods
threatened on an almost daily basis," he said.

"In recent weeks we have seen how loyalist thugs around
Ahoghill and the wider area have stepped up their campaign
of intimidation and hate. It's only a matter of time before
this leads to tragic consequences."

He added: "I'm calling on all those with influence in the
unionist community to work to bring this vile campaign to
an end.

"The fact that the police deem the situation serious enough
to take this action should be more than enough reason for
them to do so now."


Harryville Paint-Bomb Target

By Claire Regan
10 August 2005

North Antrim's Catholic community faced fresh anxiety today
after the beleaguered Harryville church was paint-bombed in
an overnight attack.

The frequently targeted Church of Our Lady, in the
Harryville area of Ballymena, was peppered with paint bombs
on a night of high tension in the town.

The attack came just hours after police announced that
Catholic families in the predominantly Protestant village
of Ahoghill have been issued with fire blankets and smoke
alarms amid fears they could be the next victims of
loyalist attacks.

The attack also happened as tension remained high following
the first republican band parade in the nationalist
Fisherwick estate which led to a Lambeg-drum protest
involving hundreds of loyalists.

Ballymena's DUP mayor Tommy Nicholl condemned the attack on
the church.

"I have absolutely no time for this type of thing at all,"
he said.

"Regardless of where we hang our hats on a Sunday, we are
entitled to the freedom of worship. We can never forward
our cause by attacking places of worship.

"I oppose this attack utterly and would call on the
perpetrators to cease. The ordinary unionist people of
Harryville want to live side-by-side in peace with their
Catholic neighbours."

Mr Nicholl said he was concerned by rising tensions in the
north Antrim area in recent weeks.

"I would plead with both sides involved to stop," he added.

Last night's attack at the Harryville church is the latest
in a wave of paintbomb and graffiti incidents in the past
month, with the previous attack happening at the weekend.

Two weeks ago members from High Kirk Presbyterian church in
Ballymena cleaned graffiti off the walls of the church in a
gesture much appreciated by Catholic clergy and

See page 4


Ex-UDR Soldiers 'Quizzed On GAA Murder'

By Jonathan McCambridge
10 August 2005

Police today declined to comment on reports that a number
of former UDR soldiers were among those questioned over the
death of GAA official Sean Brown.

Father-of-six Sean Brown (61) was abducted and murdered by
the LVF as he locked up the Wolfe Tone Gaelic Athletic Club
on May 12, 1997.

He was shot several times and his body later recovered
beside his burnt-out car in Randalstown.

Recently detectives investigating the murder and loyalist
paramilitary activity launched more than 20 searches and
made several arrests across counties Antrim, Armagh and

According to reports today, some of those questioned were
ex-members of the UDR.

However, a police spokeswoman said they would not comment
on the identities of people questioned.

During the searches, police arrested eight men and one
woman under terrorist legislation. The also arrested three
women and one man under Proceeds of Crime legislation.

All were later released.

Police working on the investigation last week also swooped
on a number of addresses in England. Two men and two women
were arrested and released pending inquiries.

Police launched a new investigation into the Brown murder
after a damning 2003 Police Ombudsman investigation which
said the RUC had made "no earnest effort" to catch the
killers in their original investigation.


So much for peace

Paramilitary thugs carry out 21 gun attacks and 36 beatings
in just three months

By Michael McHugh

10 August 2005

Republicans and loyalists have carried out dozens of
paramilitary assaults and shootings since April, fresh
statistics revealed yesterday.

Loyalists were responsible for 25 assaults and 19 shootings
between April and June and this covers the period before
the beginning of the feud. Republicans, who say they have
been committed to peaceful means for many years, were
responsible for 11 assaults and two shootings.

The figures have emerged against the backdrop of a loyalist
struggle which has left three men dead and recent
commitments from the IRA on decommissioning and

Jane Winter, director of the British/Irish Rights Watch
which helps the victims of the Troubles and its aftermath,
said the numbers of incidents taking place were very

"I think it's very sad that paramilitaries on both sides
are still taking the law into their own hands and obviously
some communities still lack the confidence to report crime
directly to the police so that it can be dealt with
properly," she said.

"These punishment shootings and beatings are the roughest
of rough justice and there is no regard to the innocent
until proven guilty when it comes to these sort of attacks.

"This cannot be acceptable in a civilised society. It is
also an indicator of the fact that there are still people
out there who don't have confidence in the police to deal
with what is often petty crime like stealing cars and the
infighting of the drugs trade.

"Police statisticians have recorded a total of 33
shootings, not all of which can be attributed to
paramilitaries, as well as four bombings and one incendiary
device and the illegal activity has clear ramifications for
the political process.

"At the start of last May's electoral campaign Sinn Fein
president Gerry Adams kick-started an internal debate
within republicanism about a permanent end to the armed
struggle which brought about last month's IRA order to dump

"It is also a problem that police are still not reaching
certain communities and these thugs are being allowed to
control their areas," Ms Winter added.

Republicans and loyalists have come under fierce criticism
for engaging in criminality with opposition parties calling
for the severing of all links with crime.

Security chiefs are spending £30,000 a day dealing with the
feud between the LVF and UVF.

The UVF has been blamed for all three killings.

Stephen Paul (28), was gunned down outside his north
Belfast home at the end of last month. Craig McCausland
(22), was also shot nearby. Jameson Lockhart (25), was
killed at the wheel of his lorry in east Belfast last

The latest shooting incident, a man shot in the chest and
seriously injured at Glenside Park in north Belfast on
Sunday, has also been connected to tensions within

Attacks April-June 2005

Loyalist assaults: 25
Loyalist shootings: 19

Republican assaults: 11
Republican shootings: 2

Total assaults: 36
Total shootings: 21


New Jail Threat To Colombia Three

By Chris Thornton
10 August 2005

Sinn Fein had no comment today on Irish Government
proposals for the Colombia Three to serve their jail
sentences in the Republic.

As southern politicians accused Sinn Fein of co-ordinating
the return of the three fugitives to Ireland, Tanaiste Mary
Harney said legislation currently before the Dail could be
employed to jail the three republicans on behalf of the
Colombian government.

The Irish Government said some initial contact has taken
place between Bogota and Dublin, but there is still no
formal extradition request for the three - James Monaghan,
Sinn Fein's Niall Connolly, and Lurgan man Martin McCauley.

Earlier this year the three republicans had been convicted
of aiding FARC terrorists in Colombia and sentenced to 17
years in prison, but they skipped bail before they could be

They resurfaced in the Republic last week, sparking a major
political storm that has threatened to damage relations
between unionists and the Republic.

Sinn Fein president Gerry Adams welcomed the men back to
Ireland, prompting criticism from the Republic's junior
Justice Minister, Brian Lenihan.

Ms Harney said the Republic's government is taking its
obligations to deal with international terrorism seriously.

"It is important that the three persons involved and those
who have expressed exultation at their return to this
country should not under-estimate the Government's
determination to explore all the options open to it to
ensure that Ireland continues to play its full part in the
fight against international terrorism," Ms Harney said.

However, there may still be legal obstacles. The fact that
the three men were initially cleared by a court in Colombia
but convicted by a prosecution appeal - a legal move not
allowed in Ireland or the UK - may mean that an Irish court
would not recognise their sentence.


Extremists Who Are Deported Will Be Tortured, Warns UN

By Nigel Morris and Marie Woolf

10 August 2005

The United Nations has warned Tony Blair that his plans to
deport Islamic extremists and foreign terror suspects could
fall foul of international human rights law because they
face torture in their home countries.

The damning verdict on the deportation proposals, from
Manfred Novak, the UN's special rapporteur on torture, came
as the Government's problems deepened over its anti-terror

Ministers have been examining ways to prevent the extremist
cleric Sheikh Omar Bakri Mohammed from returning to Britain
from Lebanon and have abandoned a heavily trailed threat to
prosecute militants for treason.

The Prime Minister announced last week that ministers were
trying to win promises from around 10 countries that they
would not torture deportees sent to them. But Mr Novak said
that assurances from countries such as Jordan and Algeria
that they they would not harm the suspects they received
were worthless.

"If you deport people, whether they are British citizens or
foreigners, to another country where they are subjected to
the risk of torture, then this is absolutely prohibited
under international human rights law," he told BBC Radio
4's Today programme. "If there is a substantial risk in a
certain country like Algeria, Jordan, Egypt, etc, then
diplomatic assurances cannot be used."

Mr Novak cited a recent example of a man deported from
Sweden to Egypt, who was tortured in spite of promises by
the Egyptian government that he would not be ill-treated.

"If a country usually and systematically practises torture,
then of course they would deny they were doing it because
it is absolutely prohibited so they can easily give
diplomatic assurances but they are worth nothing."

Britain has concluded a memorandum of understanding with
Jordan that suspects who are returned will not be harmed.
Mr Blair has said Britain was " close to getting necessary
assurances from other relevant countries", naming Algeria
and Lebanon.

The Government has not named the other nations from which
it hopes to win pledges not to torture deportees. They are
thought to include Egypt, Tunisia, Morocco, Libya, Syria,
Yemen and the United Arab Emirates. All retain the death
penalty and, according to Amnesty International, there have
been recent reports of torture in most.

Mr Bakri, who fled England for Beirut on Saturday, has
joint Syrian-Lebanese nationality and so could be deported
to either country under the Government's proposals.

Also likely to be among the first to be deported is Abu
Qatada, a Jordanian who is now under house arrest after
being released from Belmarsh prison.

Amnesty International recently highlighted reports that two
Yemeni men were tortured over four days in Jordan. They
claimed to have been severely beaten, being repeatedly hit
on the soles of the feet with sticks while suspended upside
down with hands and feet tied. It says torture is
widespread in both Algeria and Lebanon.

Kate Allen, Amnesty's UK director, said: "The assurances of
known torturers cannot be trusted and we have seen no
indication of any monitoring to ensure that these promises
are honoured." Announcing the moves, Mr Blair said France
and Spain deported terrorist suspects to their home
countries without breaching their human rights obligations.


Dissidents Blamed For Bomb Attack Bid

Seven police hurt in night of violence

By Michael McHugh
10 August 2005

Republican dissidents were today blamed for a failed bomb
attack which led to a night of violence in which seven
police officers were injured.

More than 30 petrol bombs were hurled at security forces
after the aborted attack on Lurgan police station in Co

Youths in the Lake Street area launched their assault on
police last night as officers dealt with a "crude but
viable" explosive device, which was destined for the police

Politicians have blamed dissident republicans for the

According to the SDLP, a taxi driver, who arrived to
collect a passenger in the nearby Kilwilkee estate, was
confronted at gunpoint and told to drive to the barracks
with the device onboard.

However, he abandoned his vehicle outside St Peter's GAA
club on North Street.

The gang of youths then confronted police dealing with the
incident by hurling petrol bombs, bottles, bricks, ball
bearings and other missiles.

One of the injured officers was hospitalised, although his
condition is not serious or life threatening.

SDLP Assemblywoman for Upper Bann, Dolores Kelly, said it
was a sinister development.

"There seems to be no doubt that dissidents were involved
in this and Sinn Fein does not seem to have control over
the young people in that area," she said.

"It gives everybody in the area a bad name and it is a very
sinister development in what has been a pattern of
behaviour in that area.

"We have to ask where is the parental responsibility and it
must have been a difficult experience for the cab driver
and the police officers who were injured."

North Street was closed for several hours when the alert
started at around 9.30pm yesterday and a helicopter was
called in as violence intensified.

Army bomb disposal experts were summoned to the scene and
the device was disabled.

According to Ms Kelly, the bomb planted in the taxi
driver's car was contained in a blue barrel.

She said the petrol bombs have probably been gathered by
rioters since the July holidays.

"We would have hoped that this was a thing of the past.
Obviously the IRA statement has not gone down well in some
circles but Sinn Fein needs to support the police so they
can put these dissidents out of business," she added.

There have been at least four hoaxes in the area in recent
months and around 30 in 2004.

In June 2004 a 60kg bomb at Lurgan Golf Club, which is near
the scene of the latest incident, exploded, causing damage
to the club house.

Upper Bann MP David Simpson said the news had implications
for republicans' credibility.

"Our thoughts are with the officers who were injured. It
was a credible threat and had this device went off there
could have been serious injuries, if not fatalities in the
police station," he said.

"This comes a week after the IRA statement saying that all
attacks on police officers were to stop.

"The bottom line, whether it's the Provisional, Continuity
or Real IRA, it is all the republican movement which has
not stopped its violence against decent people.

"Despite this we are seeing the security installations
being taken down," he said.


Bogside Residents Call Off Protest Against Loyalist Parade

10/08/2005 - 12:12:32

Nationalist residents in Derry's Bogside have decided not
to mount a protest against a loyalist Apprentice Boys march
in the city at the weekend.

The Derry Bogside Residents Association had threatened to
mount a protest if the Parades Commission allowed a feeder
march in Belfast to pass through the nationalist Ardoyne

The Parades Commission has decided to ban this contentious
march from Ardoyne and the Bogside residents have now asked
all supporters to refrain from any protest action in Derry.


Loyalists Stage Protest Over Ballymena Republican March

By Nevin Farrell
10 August 2005

Hundreds of loyalists took the streets in Ballymena last
night and marched in protest to the Fisherwick estate over
the first republican parade to be held in the Co Antrim

The loyalists forced the police to deploy Land Rovers to
block their path and avoid a potential clash.

As the band parade was taking place in the nationalist
enclave, dozens of riot cops were facing around 300
loyalists accompanied by three Lambeg drummers whilst a UDA
flag was hoisted above the loyalist crowd.

Ballymena police chief Terry Shevlin said: "A couple of
hundred people wanted to make a protest about the
republican parade in Fisherwick.

"We have created a sterile area. There were only minor

Ballymena Sinn Fein councillor Monica Digney, who witnessed
the crowd approaching the small Fisherwick estate from the
nearby loyalist Ballykeel area, said she feared the area
was going to be over-run.

She said: "Hundreds upon hundreds of people appeared from
nowhere. The situation should never have happened. That is
an illegal parade."

Ballymena DUP councillor Roy Gillespie said: "This
republican parade should not have been held.

"It is stirring sectarian tensions and is an insult to

"We look upon it as an IRA parade. They have murdered our
kith and kin and are anti-British, anti-Protestant and

"That parade should not have been allowed in any town,
never mind Ballymena."

Earlier, republican bandsmen in paramilitary-style clothing
chanted 'INLA' after marching to police lines blocking them
from leaving the Fisherwick estate.

A large police presence swamped the estate where initially
just two bands were on the march at around 7.30pm.

Around 100 loyalists initially gathered nearby but were
kept away from marchers by police.

Republican parade organiser Paddy Murray said he was
confident the night would remain peaceful from the parade
supporters' point of view and he said the bands would
disperse after playing the Irish national anthem.

Mr Murray, from Antrim town, said he was asked by young
people in the area to hold a march to mark the anniversary
of the introduction of internment in 1971.

The march had been banned from proceeding along main routes
in the north end of Ballymena, which has a Catholic
majority, by the Parades Commission.

Unionist anger had been expressed at the possibility of a
republican march through some of Ballymena's main roads,
and loyalist attacks on pubs and churches in the area were
linked by police to tensions surrounding the parade.

Sinn Fein and the SDLP had called for the march to be
cancelled, saying the majority of people in Fisherwick did
not want it.


SF And SDLP Criticise Contentious Internment March

11:33 Wednesday August 10th 2005

Sinn Fein and the SDLP have both condemned an internment
commemoration march held last in the staunchly unionist
town of Ballymena in Co Antrim.

The march was arranged by republicans without links to Sinn
Fein and was confined to a nationalist estate in the town
on the orders of the Parades Commission.

Loyalists were vehemently opposed to it and mounted a noisy
protest last night as the march passed by lines of riot

The SDLP and Sinn Fein have now appealed to the organisers
to drop any plans they may have for a similar march next

The parade has increased tensions throughout north Antrim,
where Catholics have been targeted in a spate of sectarian
attacks in recent weeks.


Tense Night In Ballymena After Republican March

By Nevin Farrell
10 August 2005

Bandsmen in paramilitary-style clothing chanted "INLA"
after marching to police lines during the first republican
band parade in Ballymena last night.

A large police presence swamped the Fisherwick estate,
where initially just two bands were on the march at around

Over 100 loyalists gathered nearby but were kept away from
marchers by police.

As the parade got under way there were no reports of
trouble, but police sources said a long, tense night lay

A police helicopter hovered overhead as several police Land
Rovers - crammed with riot officers - sat nearby.

Before the march, Supt Terry Shevlin said: "There has been
considerable tensions in respect of this parade.

"The Parades Commission did make a determination
restricting the parade to Fisherwick Gardens. That
alleviated some of the tensions in the community.

"However, feelings are still running high about this very
first republican parade in the town."

Loyalists were blamed for a number of attacks on Catholic
homes, pubs and churches in Ballymena in the run-up to the


Ulster To Get Secret Courts

By Chris Thornton
10 August 2005

The Government's proposals for secret anti-terror courts
will apply to Northern Ireland - but will not replace the
no-jury Diplock Courts.

The DUP said today that it is "ironic" that the new system
will be introduced as jury trials return to Northern

Diplock Courts, which have operated since 1973, abolished
jury trials for republican and loyalist suspects in order
to avoid intimidation of jurors.

The Government promised to abolish them last week, saying
it would remove all anti-terror laws "particular to
Northern Ireland".

This week the Government announced plans for new pre-trial
courts for terrorism suspects. Government sources say they
will operate in Northern Ireland. The courts will consider
secret evidence and whether that evidence can be presented
to a jury.
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