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October 26, 2005

Dozens of Fugitives Could Return

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News about Ireland & the Irish

BB 10/26/05 Dozens Of Fugitives Could Return
IE 10/26/05 Adams Has Two Dates To Keep
IE 10/26/05 Reps. Back Adams Right To Fundraise
UT 10/26/05 Restore Power-Sharing – Ervine
UT 10/26/05 Dublin Considers Court Action Over ‘74 Bombings
UT 10/26/05 Cowen: North And South Must Work Together More
IT 10/26/05 DUP Positive On Proposal For More Co-Operation
DU 10/26/05 N Ireland A Cold House For Paramilitaries
DU 10/26/05 Discrimination In Police Recruitment
BB 10/26/05 George Best's Condition 'Deteriorates'
IT 10/27/05 Irish-Style Beer Turned Into Cheap Fuel In US


Dozens Of Fugitives Could Return

"Dozens" of paramilitary fugitives could be allowed home
under 'on-the-run' proposals, Northern Ireland Secretary
Peter Hain has said.

Mr Hain was responding to questions at the NI Affairs
Committee from the DUP's Gregory Campbell.

He said he would be taking advice from the police as to who
would be included in the scheme.

He said that the legislation is likely to be brought before
parliament early next month.

"They (police) have a number of suspects for crimes - I
readily concede crimes that in some cases were horrific
crimes, but it goes into dozens at any rate," Mr Hain said.

He said further suspects, who may still be in the province,
could be "unearthed" by new police inquiries into "historic

Mr Campbell said there was outrage and anger in Northern
Ireland that murderers had never served a day in jail for
their offences.

Mr Hain said sometimes undesirable things had to be done in
the interests of conflict resolution.

He said he understood the real concerns of the people of
Northern Ireland on this issue.

The legislation will deal with people suspected of
terrorism who have not been brought to court and those who
have fled prison.

Sinn Fein has repeatedly pressed for them to be able to
return to Northern Ireland.

Asked when the legislation would be brought forward by the
chair of the committee Sir Patrick Cormack, Mr Hain said he
was not certain of the date but it would be before
Christmas and probably early next month.

Story from BBC NEWS:
Published: 2005/10/26 17:43:29 GMT


Adams Has Two Dates To Keep

By Ray O'Hanlon

Gerry Adams is due in New York in a few days time for an
event aimed at honoring his party's past and boosting its

But he is also due as a top table guest at prestigious
awards dinner being hosted by the National Committee on
American Foreign Policy.

Adams, along with former New York governor Hugh Carey, is
to be presented with a peace award at the dinner set for
the Waldorf Astoria in Manhattan.

The Waldorf event is scheduled for Tuesday, Nov. 8, two
days before the Friends of Sinn Féin dinner across town in
the Sheraton.

The National Committee will present both Adams and Carey
with the William J. Flynn Initiative for Peace Award, a
prize named after its chairman.

Both Flynn and the committee are no strangers to arguments
over Adams, his visits to the U.S. and his rights to travel
and fundraise within the country.

It was an appeal from Flynn and the National Committee,
directed at then President Clinton, that played a pivotal
role in clearing the way for the first visit to the U.S. by
Adams in early 1994.

Clinton instructed the State Department to lift the visa
ban on Adams although Adams was severely restricted in his
movements and time allowance during that first American

The visit, indeed, was almost entirely confined to Adams's
attendance at a National Committee event in New York City.

In a press release detailing the upcoming Waldorf dinner,
the National Committee said that that first visa enabled
Adams -- as well as representatives from all sides of the
divide in the North -- to present his case in person to
politicians, representatives of Irish America, scholars and
the media at a conference convened by the committee.

"The trust placed in Mr. Adams by President Clinton, the
NCAFP, and many others has borne fruit," the release

Ironically, 11 years after that first visa, Adams is still
facing potential restrictions on his visa despite the
fruits of the peace process, not least the IRA's recent
statement disavowing violence and its final decommissioning
of weapons.

The National Committee on American Foreign Policy was
founded in 1974 by Professor Hans J. Morgenthau and others.

In its own words the committee is a "nonprofit, activist
organization dedicated to the resolution of conflicts that
threaten U.S. interests."

Toward that end it "identifies, articulates, and helps
advance American foreign policy interests from a
nonpartisan perspective within the framework of political

Previous winners of the William J. Flynn Initiative for
Peace Award are former United States Senator George
Mitchell, the facilitator of the Good Friday agreement, the
late Dr. Marjorie "Mo" Mowlam, who served as British
secretary of state for Northern Ireland, and Viola Herms
Drath, who laid the groundwork for the process that led to
the reunification of Germany.

This story appeared in the issue of October 26 - November
1, 2005


Reps. Back Adams Right To Fundraise

By Ray O'Hanlon

Members of Congress are urging the State Department to lift
a fundraising ban on Sinn Féin in advance of the upcoming
visit to the U.S. of party leader Gerry Adams.

And that very visit could be in jeopardy if the specific
Adams fundraising component is denied by the U.S.

Seven members of the House of Representatives have signed
on to a statement in which they say they "strongly oppose
efforts to ban Sinn Fein fundraising in the United States."

The signatories include the Republican chairman of the
Friends of Ireland group in Congress, Rep. James Walsh, and
Rep. Richie Neal, a Democratic co-chair of the Ad Hoc
Committee on Irish Affairs.

The group plays up its bipartisan composition in a
statement in which they express "in the strongest possible
terms our opposition to any effort that would prohibit Sinn
Fein from raising funds."

"We urge the U.S. Department of State to lift the
fundraising ban immediately. It is our belief that this
decision is unwarranted, and may have a negative and
unintended impact on the progress that has been made in the
Northern Ireland peace process," the congressmen state
while pointing to an "extraordinary sequence of recent
events" has helped move that process significantly forward.

The signatories pointed to the International Monitoring
Commission published eport "which characterized the IRA's
transition to exclusively peaceful and democratic means as

And they highlighted the British government's decision to
lift financial sanctions it had imposed on Sinn Fein.

"The U.S. Department of State should follow suit," the
statement said.

"We believe that the Sinn Fein leadership has kept its word
and honored its commitments. At this critical moment in the
peace process, they should not be penalized for delivering
on their promises," it added.

"Every political party from Northern Ireland has the right
to fundraise in the United States. We are simply calling
for a level playing field. The ban that prevents Sinn Fein
from fundraising in the United States should be lifted

In addition to Walsh and Neal, the statement was also
signed by reps. Joe Crowley, John Sweeney, Eliot Engel,
Frank Pallone and Brian Higgins.

Adams is due to be the keynote speaker at a Friends of Sinn
Féin fundraising dinner at the Sheraton Hotel in Manhattan
on Thursday, Nov. 10.

The dinner is an annual event but this year's is a special
gathering given that it coincides with the 100th
anniversary of the founding of Sinn Féin.

FOSF president Larry Downes said that the dinner was going
ahead and would be a fundraiser even if Adams was prevented
from attending.

Downes said that Adams had applied for a visa with a
fundraising element but acknowledged the possibility that
if Adams did not get the desired fundraising component he
"may not come to the country at all."

Downes described the current ban on fundraising - which was
applied to the party's chief negotiator Martin McGuinness
during his recent U.S. visit - as "unfortunate."

He said he could not understand why "anybody would be doing
this at this time."

"People should be supporting Adams, not undermining him,"
Downes said.

While there appears to be problems with the precise nature
of an upcoming Adams visa - specifically whether or not it
will be broad enough to allow Adams to personally engage in
fundraising - Friends of Sinn Féin is not in any way
restricted in its fundraising operations in the U.S.

It can do so year round with or without the presence of
leading party figures. The group reports the gross amounts
of money it has raised to the U.S. Justice Department on a
six monthly basis.

This story appeared in the issue of October 26 - November
1, 2005


Restore Power-Sharing - Ervine

There is no reason why power-sharing institutions cannot be
fully restored in Northern Ireland within a year, it was
claimed today.

By:Press Association

Progressive Unionist Party (PUP) leader David Ervine also
vowed that loyalist paramilitary groups, currently involved
in a violent feud, would not stand in the way of the
political process.

"There is no excuse for us not to have the restoration of
the Northern Ireland assembly by this time next year. No
excuses," said Mr Ervine today after a meeting with
Taoiseach Bertie Ahern in Dublin.

"If we allow ourselves to drift into another Northern
Ireland summer without having some practical work done on
restoration of devolution, then we have no right to be
involved in politics."

The East Belfast MLA said the Taoiseach indicated to him
that talks between the British and Irish governments and
Northern Ireland political parties could begin as early as
next month.

"That was something that I was delighted to hear," Mr
Ervine said afterwards.

The PUP leader also said he was heartened by Mr Ahern`s
optimism on the issue, adding: "Nothing that we`ve seen on
the horizon lately would suggest a swift restoration, but
the Taoiseach today filled me with some encouragement."

Mr Ervine also said that Mr Ahern agreed with him that
attempts to begin power-sharing talks should start as soon
as possible.

Mr Ervine was speaking after a four-member delegation,
which included party chairman Dawn Purvis, met Mr Ahern for
an hour at Government Buildings.

The PUP decided at its recent annual conference that it
would not sever its links with loyalist paramilitary
groups, the Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF) and the Red Hand

In September, the Independent Monitoring Commission blamed
the UVF for five murders and 15 attempted murders as part
of its feud with the Loyalist Volunteer Force.

Mr Ervine today insisted that the UVF would remain
supportive of any exploratory talks on power-sharing.

"I have no evidence that the UVF wants to derail the
process of the exploration of politics. That would suggest
that they would like see restoration," he said.

But he said the UVF was worried about local issues like
water charges and "off-handed ministers who fly in from
London and do a bad job and fly back out again".

Referring to loyalist paramilitaries, he added: "They are
citizens of society who genuinely recognise that the only
way that we`re ever going to enjoy the space that we`ve got
is to share it."

The PUP leader welcomed Mr Ahern`s comments at the recent
Wolfe Tone republican commemoration in Co Kildare that he
wanted to reach out to loyalists and include them in the
political process.

"I just wish that the rest of nationalist Ireland would
take a leaf of his book," Mr Ervine said.

"What he is saying is that loyalists need time and space
and they should be included in a new society governed by
the pt SDLP criticism of the PUP for lack of leadership
within its co sever its links with the UVF.

"John Hume was talking to the IRA when the IRA was blowing
the living hell out of the community I come from, and John
Hume went on to get the Nobel Peace Prize. Did anybody
suggest that that was failed leadership, when you try to
turn people away from a violent path towards a path of
democracy?" asked Mr Ervine.

"Our desire is to put away paramilitarism forever," he

Mr Ervine said his party would continue to concentrate on
rebuilding confidence and stability in the loyalist
community after the devastating riots and arson attacks of
last month.

Northern Ireland Secretary of State Peter Hain is still
deciding whether to continue the suspension of the party`s
Assembly allowances because of its links with the UVF.


WEDNESDAY 26/10/2005 17:38:29

Dublin To Consider Court Action Over 1974 Bombings

The Irish government will decide next month whether it will
take Britain to the European courts over a lack of co-
operation on the Dublin Monaghan bombings, it emerged

By:Press Association

A total of 34 people including an unborn child were killed
in the May 1974 atrocities when three bombs exploded in
central Dublin and one detonated in Monaghan town.

Taoiseach Bertie Ahern tonight told the Dail in Dublin that
legal advice from the Attorney General on taking a case to
the European Court of Human Rights is due next month.

Mr Ahern said Prime Minister Tony Blair had promised to go
directly to MI5 and MI6 to request specific information
that an inquiry into the atrocities is seeking.

"That work has been done and we`re due to get the advice
next month," Mr Ahern told Opposition TDs.

It is claimed that loyalist paramilitaries from Northern
Ireland carried out the bombings with the collusion of
British security forces who supplied intelligence and

The Taoiseach said he had raised the bombings when he met
Mr Blair at a British-Irish Intergovernmental meeting in
June and again at talks in Downing Street earlier this

"We have made it very clear to the British authorities at
all levels. They are very clear at my views and the
Opposition`s views. They are well aware of the sense of the
House and the country.

"They have indicated that they will try to deal with the
information. We`ve been through this process for a long
time now."

Mr Ahern said that Mr Blair promised to raise the issue
directly with MI5 and MI6 to try to access files on the

"We see that as encouraging. Whether he gets an encouraging
response, we`ll wait and see. I`ll take the Prime Minister
on his word and we`ll see. The Prime Minister said he will
try again and I`ll accept that."

Independent Dail TD Finian McGrath said it was totally
unacceptable that Britain had refused to co-operate with
the Barron Report inquiry into the atrocities.

"The victims and families feel extremely let down by this
lack of co-operation, he said.

"It is a sad day for international law when a state like
ourselves has to get legal advice to pressurise another
government to co-operate in relation to atrocities like the
Dublin Monaghan bombings."

Sinn Fein`s leader in the Dail, Caoimhghin O Caolain,
claimed that the Barron Report said that UDR and RUC
members were involved in planning the atrocity and that the
chief suspects had links to British intelligence officers.

"It`s long past time that the British were held
internationally accountable for its actions in 1974," he

Mr Ahern said that co-operation was forthcoming from
British authorities in some areas but not in others.

"The view of everybody concerned is we have to get the
British government to deal with the issue without judicial
involvement or legal proceedings.

"Based on what has happened, I`m a bit pessimistic about
this but we are endeavouring to narrow this down [to
specific information required]."

Labour`s justice spokesman Joe Costello said that the saga
had been allowed to run on for seven years and the victims`
families weren`t getting any younger.

"There is a very palpable sense that we`re moving very
slowly," he added.


Cowen: North And South Must Work Together More

An intensification of economic co-operation between
Northern Ireland and the Irish Republic was called for by
the Irish Finance Minister today.

By:Press Association

Brian Cowen told an economic conference outside Belfast
that greater working together would be good for both sides
of the border.

He singled out the near £70 billion (€100 million) due to
be invested in infrastructure improvements north and south
over the coming decade.

He said it was a phenomenal amount of tax-payers money and
with it went a huge responsibility to get it right.

"In my view, getting it right for the tax-payer both sides
of the border means working together. Planning together.
Pooling our resources," he said.

There was also a need to share information on hard policy
choices and joining up that which needed to be joined up.

"Infrastructure is a key challenge that we need to tackle
together," said Mr Cowen.

The minister made a plea for a swift resolution to
political discussion in Northern Ireland following the
IRA`s recent disarmament.

He said it was his profound hope that the intensified
political engagement currently underway would see the
earliest possible return of the Northern Ireland Executive
and Assembly.

"If there was any one act which could most contribute to
the development of enhanced economic activity, both within
Northern Ireland and between the two parts of the island it
is that," said Mr Cowen.

He said, expressing all due respect to his British
counterparts, that he greatly looked forward to the day
when the people at the other end of the discussion table
were Northern Ireland politicians who were accountable to
their local electorate, rather than Northern Ireland Office

It made sense to tackle the economic opportunities and
competitiveness challenges on an all-island basis where
such collaboration was of benefit to all, he said.

Significant progress had been made towards an all-island
energy network, and success through a joint tourism
approach, said the minister.

There was need to look at regional development to ensure
the island`s road network was "joined up" and of the
quality needed in the 21st century.

And Mr Cowen said he did not subscribe to the argument that
the huge strides forward made by the Southern economy in
the last decade, at the same time as major progress in the
peace process in the North, had been a simple matter of

"I just do not accept that as being the case. There was no
coincidence," he said.

It would be for the economic experts and the historians to
work out the exact scale of inter-connection, said Mr

But he added: "Peace and prosperity have been, to coin a
phrase, inextricably linked over the last ten years. They
will continue to be so going forward."

That was why it was essential for the best and selfish
interests of the South that peace was further bedded down
and that the Good Friday Agreement was fully implemented.

"Of course my government want to see those things happen
for their own sake, because it is the right thing for our

"But it is also in our economic interest."


DUP Positive On Cowen Proposal For More Co-Operation

Gerry Moriarty, Northern Editor

The DUP has made a guardedly positive response to
proposals from Minister for Finance Brian Cowen for a
strengthening of North-South economic co-operation on a
wide range of issues.

Mr Cowen, who met senior loyalist representatives yesterday
evening, said earlier in Templepatrick, Co Antrim, that
such co-operation was imperative so the €100 billion that
will be spent on infrastructural development in the
Republic and Northern Ireland over 10 years is well spent.

In the evening the Minister visited the loyalist
Taughmonagh estate in south Belfast where he met loyalist
representatives, including UDA "brigadier" for south
Belfast Jackie McDonald. He urged greater EU financial
support for the peace process and also called on loyalists
to follow the example of the IRA. "Of course we would
encourage loyalist paramilitaries to do the same. Our own
Taoiseach Bertie Ahern has indicated that he understands we
have got to give time and space to those organisations now
to consider what they should do. Obviously we would like to
see everybody decommission their weapons," he said.

In Templepatrick Mr Cowen told an economic conference that
he was not working to any "surreptitious" united Ireland
agenda in urging greater collaboration between the two
jurisdictions on issues such as energy, infrastructure,
tourism, job creation and planning.

"We don't have to worry any more about people taking
suspicious or surreptitious agendas as if that's the
motivation for co-operation. Co-operation makes sense on
its own basis, and we have that settled constitutional
framework. We are moving on, we have all found an
accommodation, we are all trying to make it work," he said.

"All-island co-operation is an imperative for the benefit
of everyone. The more we do together by consent and by
agreement to our mutual benefit the more we'll all gain,"
Mr Cowen said before addressing the 10th annual Northern
Ireland economic conference.

"I am here to pursue an objective, rational economic
agenda: more jobs for people in Donegal and Derry, more
jobs for people in Fermanagh and Monaghan, more jobs for
people in Louth and Armagh, and obviously throughout the
island of Ireland we can do an awful lot more together than
we can do separately. It's patently obvious that is the
case," he said.

His comments were quite positively received by DUP chairman
and Assembly member Maurice Morrow, who also attended the
conference. "We have made it quite clear that where there
can be co-operation we will not be opposed to that. But it
will be co-operation which will be of mutual benefit to
both Northern Ireland and to the Irish Republic. We have
never opposed that.

"But we are going to make it quite clear that we will work
within the jurisdiction of Northern Ireland and we expect
the southern Government to do likewise. They have to
realise that if they keep their aggressiveness that has
been prevalent down the years, then they are going to make
it difficult to take this forward," he said.

(c) The Irish Times


Northern Ireland A Cold House For Paramilitaries

DUP Deputy Leader Peter Robinson has today told the
Secretary of State that there is no future for
paramilitaries in Northern Ireland regardless of whether
they are loyalist or republican. Speaking from Westminster
Mr Robinson said,

"The Government should note that the whole community in
Northern Ireland believe that it is time for all
paramilitary organisations in Northern Ireland both
loyalist and republican to shut down and to disband.

The overwhelming majority of people in Northern Ireland are
fearful that the Government are intent on repackaging the
paramilitaries as community restorative justice officers or
indeed as some sort of community support service. I would
hope that the Secretary of State would be able to assure me
that we will be seeing the back of paramilitaries rather
than seeing them in a new guise."

The East Belfast MP also asked the Secretary of State,

"What interpretation he had taken from the IMC report, a
report which he and the Government totally disregarded, in
relation to suggestions that the IRA are now involved in
political intelligence gathering?"


Campbell Highlights Discrimination In Police Recruitment

Gregory Campbell today challenged the Secretary of State on
the issue of police recruitment. Speaking Mr Campbell

"The Government will be aware that there has been a recent
downturn in confidence within the unionist community in the
Police. They should also be aware that the reason for this
downturn in confidence is the legal discrimination which
has prevented three and a half thousand Protestants from
joining the Service, even though they are suitably

Will the Government now, after the latest figures issued
last week, acknowledge that if the merit principle had been
applied, twenty-six percent of recruits would have been
Roman Catholics. Does he not feel that he should re-
establish the system whereby recruits are assessed on merit
only and move to a situation where the Police Service can
recruit new officers on a non-discriminatory basis?"


George Best's Condition 'Deteriorates'

Football legend George Best's condition has "deteriorated
dramatically", his former wife Alex said.

The ex-Manchester United and Northern Ireland star has
spent three weeks in intensive care at London's Cromwell
Hospital, with an infection.

His surgeon Roger Williams confirmed his condition had
deteriorated but was not life threatening at the moment. He
said the next few days were crucial.

Best, 59, had a liver transplant in 2002 following drinking

He was admitted to the Cromwell Hospital with flu-like
symptoms and developed a kidney infection.


March 2000: Severe liver damage diagnosed
February 2001: Treated for pneumonia
April 2001: Anti-alcohol pellets implanted into his stomach
July 2002: Undergoes liver transplant
November 2004: Routine operation to check on liver
October 2005: Treated for kidney infection in intensive

His ex-wife Alex Best said: "I have been told that George's
condition has deteriorated dramatically during today.

"I am just praying that, once again, he somehow manages to
pull through against all the odds. My thoughts and prayers
are with him."

Earlier this week, Best's agent Phil Hughes said the former
player was "doing very well" and his condition had

But on Wednesday it appeared his condition had changed. It
was understood he was suffering from internal bleeding and
was on life support.

'Fighting for life'

Professor Williams, who is in charge of the former
footballer's care, told the Sun newspaper that Best was
"certainly severely ill and is fighting for his life."

The professor also told the newspaper he had not traced the
cause of the bleeding.

"We are not giving up. There's still a chance we can get
him through this," he added.

When Best was admitted to the hospital, Professor Williams
said that prescribed drugs needed after his transplant,
rather than alcohol abuse, were the cause of his illness.

He said the ex-footballer had become more susceptible to
infections after a course of medication to suppress the
immune system and prevent his body rejecting the new liver.

And Mr Hughes said his client had been "off the drink"
before being admitted to the hospital.

Story from BBC NEWS:
Published: 2005/10/26 22:18:02 GMT


Irish-Style Beer Turned Into Cheap Fuel In US

Seán O'Driscoll in New York

A strong Irish-style beer is being successfully turned
into cheap fuel for cars in the United States.

The Coors brewing company is converting its waste product
into ethanol to fuel cars, with Killians Irish Red turning
out to be the most efficient fuel source.

The beer has a higher alcohol content than regular Coors
beers, which converts to greater fuel content when
converted to ethanol. Coors and its engineering partner,
Merrick, is already producing 1.5 million gallons of
ethanol, using Killians and other Coors products.

Coors are opening a second $2.3 million ethanol plant later
this month, which will double ethanol production by adding
millions of gallons of beer that spilled during the brewing

Merrick vice-president Steven Wagner said the project will
last at least 15 years. "It's a pretty unique solution.
Killians has a higher alcohol solution, so you get just
that bit more energy from it," he said.

Mr Wagner said that the Coors brewery in Golden, Colorado,
produces more than 21 million barrels of beer a year and
could be a major ethanol source.

He said it would take just a few weeks before his company
sets up the second ethanol production plant.

Researchers say the plant will be an expanding project that
will help the environment and help beat rising fuel costs.
The ethanol from the Coors plant will sell at about $2.55
(€2.11) a gallon, or 47 cent a litre.

(c) The Irish Times

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