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May 16, 2006

Reprisals Fears Over Boy's Murder

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BB 05/16/06 Reprisal Fears Over Boy's Murder
SF 05/16/06 Nationalists Angry At Ballymena PSNI Chief Comments
SF 05/16/06 Appeal To Business To Use Influence To Return Executive
IT 05/16/06 Hain Calls For End To UVF Paramilitary Activities
BB 05/16/06 Cash To Revitalise City Streets


Reprisal Fears Over Boy's Murder

Extra police have been deployed to prevent reprisals for
the murder of Michael McIlveen, police have said.

The teenager died last Monday, the day after he was
attacked by a gang at Garfield Place, Ballymena.

Superintendent Terry Shevlin said there were concerns that
republicans may retaliate for the killing of the 15-year-
old Catholic schoolboy.

Mr Shevlin said that extra resources were being deployed to
try and prevent attacks and "provide reassurance".

"Sectarian assaults in Ballymena are not a one-way affair.
It wouldn't be fair to the whole community to suggest that
it was one on the other - this has been a two-way affair,"
he said.

"Sectarianism has to have two parties to be involved in it
and this is what has been happening in Ballymena.

"We are doing our absolute best, but sectarianism is not a
policing issue to solve."

He said there were "real concerns" about possible
retaliation and noted there had been dissident republican
activity in the town.

On Monday, leaflets were handed out in the loyalist
Ballykeel estate stating that a community watch group had
been set up to "protect children" in the area.

Mr Shevlin said people should leave policing to his
officers and that anyone who wanted to get involved in
community protection should do so through neighbourhood
watch schemes.

Hundreds of people gathered in the County Antrim town on
Monday for the return Michael's body to his home.

The melody of There Were Roses, a song about the futility
of sectarian murder, was played as his coffin was taken
inside the house in the Dunvale estate.

His funeral is expected to be held on Wednesday.

Michael's mother Gina wept as the coffin was carried by his
uncles past dozens of wreaths and a shrine to the murdered
teenager into the house.

Many young people wearing Celtic and Rangers football
shirts with the message 'Mickey-Bo RIP' written on the back
gathered in the rain outside the house.

Court appearances

Earlier, two youths appeared in court in connection with
his killing.

A 15-year-old teenager was charged with his murder, while a
16-year-old teenager was charged with causing affray.

Both of the boys, who cannot be named for legal reasons,
were remanded in custody at Coleraine Magistrates Court.

At the hearing, a detective opposing bail for the two
accused said that the families of both teenagers had been

He also said that tensions were high in Ballymena with
fears of reprisals.

Five other teenagers are already in custody charged with
the murder of the 15-year-old St Patrick's College pupil in
Ballymena on 7 May.

Story from BBC NEWS:
Published: 2006/05/16 08:01:26 GMT


Nationalists Angry At Ballymena PSNI Chief Comments

Published: 16 May, 2006

Sinn Féin Assembly member for North Antrim Philip McGuigan
today said that nationalists in Ballymena have no
confidence in the ability of the PSNI Chief in the town
Terry Shevlin to tackle anti-Catholic attacks in the area.
He accused the PSNI Chief of providing justification for
the murder of Michael McIlveen and of being more interested
in boosting his media profile than anything else.

Mr McGuigan said:

“Both myself and my colleague Councillor Monica Digney have
been inundated with calls from angry residents in Ballymena
concerning the conduct of the PSNI Chief Terry Shevlin in
the wake of the murder of Michael McIlveen.

“Shevlin has sought to portray the situation in Ballymena
as tit for tat violence. It is nothing of the sort.
Catholics in Ballymena have been treated as second class
citizens for years. Catholics are frightened to go into
their own town centre. Catholic school children are
frightened coming home in evening. A 15 year old is beaten
to death because he is a Catholic. Shevlin is supposed to
be the head of the PSNI in the town. His job is supposed to
be to protect the public, instead he has sought to provide
excuses for those who brutally murdered Michael McIlveen
last week. He is a disgrace.

“Nationalists in Ballymena are rightly angry at Shevlin’s
behaviour over the past seven days. He is more interested
in chasing headlines and boosting his media profile than
standing against sectarianism and anti-Catholic hatred in
the town. As a representative of the largest nationalist
party in North Antrim I can categorically state that
nationalists have no confidence in the ability of Terry
Shevlin to provide protection and face down the sectarian
bigots waging this campaign of violence.” ENDS


Mc Laughlin Appeals To Business Sector To Use Influence To Secure Return Of Executive

Published: 16 May, 2006

In his contribution during a presentation by the Business
Alliance on the Economy in Stormont today Sinn Féin
Economic Spokesperson, Mitchel Mc Laughlin appealed to the
Business sector to use its influence to convince the DUP of
the inescapable fact that without a fully functioning
Executive that the Six-county economy would continue to lag
far behind that of the rest of the island.

Mitchel Mc Laughlin told the Business Alliance that:

“Sinn Féin has long held the view that if the North’s
economy is to prosper, it can only do so in an All Ireland
context. I welcome the fact that more and more political
and economic opinion throughout Ireland is beginning to
seriously examine that argument. But it is self evident
that without the re-establishment of a fully functioning
Assembly Executive that the parties are powerless to make
the decisions required to address your concerns. The
opportunity for the economic development of the 6 counties,
as an integral part of an Island economy, has come onto the
agenda in the context of the GFA, the work of
InterTradeIreland, and the potential in the Common Chapter.
Essentially the way forward is mapped out, have we the
collective will to go for it?

“Currently, the most immediate obstacle to any
comprehensive economic development strategy is the
suspension of the Assembly. Consequently, the economic
potential of the north of Ireland is not being fulfilled.
Local ministers and politicians are not making the
decisions which would make a difference to developing a
coherent, comprehensive economic strategy which is all
Ireland in nature, which takes into account local
conditions and which is for the benefit of all people on
the island of Ireland. This is a further reason why it is
essential to have the political institutions restored and
the Good Friday Agreement working again.

“I therefore, appeal to you to use whatever influence you
may have to convince the DUP leaders to participate in the
Institutions of the GFA on the basis of equality.
Exercising a negative veto on politics in the North is
doing irreparable damage to the economy and social


Hain Calls For End To UVF Paramilitary Activities

Northern Ireland Secretary Peter Hain has called on the UVF
to end its involvement in criminality and paramilitarism.

Hain has called on the UVF to end its involvement in
criminality and paramilitarism.

"The UVF have not ended their paramilitary campaign, they
are still involved in criminality in a big way and all of
those things are things which the IRA have promised to
deliver on and is delivering on," he said.

Mr Hain's comments come as the row over the Ulster Unionist
Party's decision to admit Progressive Unionist leader David
Ervine into their Assembly Group at Stormont intensifies.

As he attended the opening of a children's park at Stormont
in memory of Mo Mowlam, Mr Hain said he understood there
was a real issue for Assembly members about the PUP's links
to the UVF.

"Therefore Sinn Féin are in a much stronger position to
claim a seat in a power-sharing Executive since they have
decommissioned, they have ended their paramilitary
campaign, and according to the Independent Monitoring
Commission they are driving criminality out of their ranks.

"Now that is a big, big advance compared with where the UVF
are. The UVF ought to catch up quickly," the Northern
Ireland secretary said.

Mr Ervine announced plans to join up with the Ulster
Unionist party's Assembly Group ahead of yesterday's
inaugural meeting of the new Northern Ireland Assembly.

The move will ensure that the group will now swell to 25
MLAs. It will also mean that there will be a unionist
majority in any future Stormont Executive and will give the
Ulster Unionists an extra ministerial seat at the expense
of Sinn Féin.

The UUP will also be called ahead of Sinn Féin in the
Assembly under its speaking rights. Assembly Speaker Eileen
Bell has been asked by the Rev Ian Paisley's Democratic
Unionists to check the legality of the move.

Dr Paisley yesterday also suggested that it now calls into
question whether the UUP was a fit partner in any future
power-sharing government at Stormont because it had allied
itself to a political party with links to an active
loyalist paramilitary organisation.

© The Irish Times/


Cash To Revitalise City Streets

The government is to spend £26m to revitalise Belfast city

The money will be spent on streets at the heart of the
city. A new piece of art will also be commissioned at a
cost of £500,000.

Social Development Minister David Hanson said the city
centre and its riverfront was "in the midst of an amazing
urban renaissance".

Mr Hanson said it was "a golden opportunity to achieve
world class standards in the design of streets".

The planned makeover would transform the Ann Street and
Corn Market areas, he said.

"This should encourage further investment and attract great
numbers of tourists.

"Belfast needs this investment to help it compete on a
regional and international basis."

Work on the city centre - at a cost of about £12m - is due
to begin in February 2007, with a completion date scheduled
for October 2009.

The Department of Social Development and Belfast City
Council are also planning to run an international design
competition which will focus on Donegall Square in the city

That scheme will cost about £12m.

Story from BBC NEWS:

Published: 2006/05/16 10:28:25 GMT


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