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July 05, 2006

Two Orange Order Men Admit UVF Membership

ORANGEMAN’S ARMOURY: Weapons and ammunition recovered
at a property in Liverpool PICTURE: Courtesy of Greater Manchester Police

News About Ireland & The Irish

BB 07/05/06
Two Men Admit Paramilitary Links
IN 07/05/06 Orangemen Admit Being In UVF After Arms Seized
IN 07/05/06 Orange Link With Loyalist Killers
SF 07/05/06 Hansen Challenged Over Orange Order Paramilitary Links
SF 07/05/06 Police Ombudsman Investigation Into Lurgan PSNI Conduct
SF 07/05/06 Unionism Wake Up To Reality Of Equality After Flags Ruling
BB 07/05/06 Sectarianism 'Must Be Eradicated'
IN 07/05/06 Judge Refuses Shoukri’s Bail Bid
SF 07/05/06 SF Welcome British Retreat From Last Hilltop Spypost
BB 07/05/06 NI Progress 'Threatened By Crime'
SF 07/05/06 NI Affairs Com Has About As Much Credibility As The IMC
BT 07/05/06 Bloody Sunday Inquiry Has Cost £400m, Claims Minister
BT 07/05/06 Doherty Attends New York Rally
BT 07/05/06 McGuinness On Peace Mission To Sri Lanka
BT 07/05/06 PSNI Appoints Scottish ACC For Public Inquiries
BT 07/05/06 BBC Apologises Over Gerry's On-Air Blast At Bush
BB 07/05/06 Council 'Broke Equality Policy'
WP 07/05/06 Campbell Boycotts Election Of New Mayor In Castlebar
AA 07/05/06 Will Sinn Fein Hogan Be Next Athlone Mayor?
SW 07/05/06 Forum On Irish Freedom Struggle
IN 07/05/06 Opin: Undocumented Have Lots Of Friends In High Places
DU 07/05/06 Opin: Pressure Must Be Kept On Republicans – DUP Dawson
BT 07/05/06 Opin: Terrorism Is Now A Global Franchise
BT 07/05/06 Opin: Somme Lines Re-Drawn
RC 07/05/06 Irish American Arts Awards Shortlist
IN 07/05/06 New Nature Reserve Opens In Belfast Hills
IN 07/05/06 Cancer ‘Most Likely In Dublin’
BN 07/05/06 MRSA Infections Up 7% To 592 Last Year


Two Men Admit Paramilitary Links

Two men from Merseyside have admitted being members of the
loyalist paramilitary organisation the Ulster Volunteer

Roy Barwise, 47, and John Irwin, 43, both from Anfield,
were part of the Liverpool Battalion of the UVF.

The pair were senior members of the group, Manchester Crown
Court heard.

Both men, involved with Orange Lodges in Liverpool, pleaded
guilty to membership of a proscribed organisation - the

They were arrested last July after police mounted raids
following an attempt to harm loyalist Johnny Adair.

Explosives, a machine gun, pistols, shotguns and hundreds
of rounds of ammunition were found in the raids on

'Inner sanctum'

The pair were due to go on trial, but pleaded guilty.

The court was shown a video of white-shirted loyalists
marching in Monkstown, near Belfast. On a mural on the side
of a house under a painting of Loyalist hero Sir Edward
Carson was the name of Lee Irwin, the son of the defendant,
who died of cancer aged 16.

The name on the mural represented a "military honour" to
the father, said David Turner QC, prosecuting. The video
went on to show a phalanx of the marchers raising their
arms to fire a volley of pistols into the air.

A second video showed inside the Derry Club in Liverpool, a
meeting point for Orange Lodge members on Merseyside.

In a room not open to members of the public, the video
showed the "inner sanctum" - its walls covered with UVF
flags and banners.

Father-of-two Barwise also pleaded guilty to two counts of
possession of ammunition, possession of firearms and
explosives and supplying ammunition.

Both men will be sentenced on Wednesday.

Story from BBC NEWS:
Published: 2006/07/04 17:05:41 GMT


Orangemen Admit Being In UVF After Arms Seized

By Barry McCaffrey

The Orange Order was last night challenged to publicly
disassociate itself from loyalist paramilitaries after two
members admitted being in the UVF.

Questions were also raised about a £100,000 British
government grant for the order after it emerged that a UVF
“shrine” was found in a club regularly used by Orangemen in

Manchester Crown Court was told yesterday that Roy Barwise
(47) and John Irwin (43) were senior members of the UVF’s
Merseyside ‘battalion’.

The men, also members of the Orange Order, were arrested
last July following police raids against the UVF on

Explosives, two British army rifles, a machine gun,
pistols, shotguns and hundreds of rounds of ammunition were

The court was shown a video of loyalists marching by a UVF
mural at Monkstown in north Belfast dedicated as a
‘military honour’ to Irwin in memory of his son Lee, who
died of cancer aged 16.

A second video showed the inside of a locked room at the
Derry Club on Merseyside, which the court heard was
regularly used for meetings by Liverpool Orangemen. Hanging
on the walls of the ‘inner sanctum’ were UVF flags and

Barwise also pleaded guilty to possession of ammunition,
fire-arms and explosives and supplying ammunition. Both men
are due to be sentenced today.

In December 2004 another Liverpool Orangeman, Alan Clair,
was jailed for eight years after being found with a sub-
machine gun, shotguns, handguns, ammunition and UVF

Last month Scottish Orangeman Stephen Moffett was convicted
of UDA membership and possession of weapons.

SDLP assembly member Alban Maginness said the Orange Order
needed to publicly disassociate itself from paramilitaries.

“It has to decide if it is a religious organisation or is a
sister organisation of the UVF and UDA,” he said.

“If it does not take immediate steps to cut its ties with
loyalist paramilitaries then the government must cut its
ties with the order.”

Sinn Fein assembly member Gerry Kelly said questions needed
to be asked about what the UVF intended to do with the

“This latest incident shows that the Orange Order and
loyalist paramilitaries appear to be intrinsically linked,”
he said.

“The Orange Order needs to answer why there was a UVF
shrine inside a building regularly used by its members.”

An Orange Order spokesman said it would not comment on an
ongoing court case.

He said Irwin and Barwaise were not members of the Grand
Orange Lodge of Ireland.

“If they were members of the grand lodge of Ireland they
would undoubtedly be expelled from the institution,” he


Orange Link With Loyalist Killers

By Barry McCaffrey

THE Orange Order has been repeatedly linked with both the
UVF and UDA in recent years.

In May of this year Scottish Orangeman Steven Moffet
pleaded guilty to UDA membership and possession of a gun,
ammunition and clothing.

In 2004 Liverpool Orange-man Alan Clair was described as
being “exceptionally dangerous” as he was jailed for eight
years for possession of a UVF arsenal.

Uncovered inside Clair’s home was a sub-machine gun, 300
rounds of ammunition, three sawn-off shotguns, two pistols
and UVF clothing.

In November 2003 the father of UVF murder victim John Allen
resigned from the Orange Order claiming that his son’s
killers had been allowed to remain within the institution.

“I did not want to do this as I have been proud to be a
member of the Orange Order for 28 years and my father was a
member for 45 years,” John Allen snr said.

“But I cannot belong to an organisation that also counts my
son’s killer as a member.”

In 2000 the order was criticised for taking part in a
commemoration to UVF man Brian Robinson who was shot dead
by undercover soldiers minutes after he murdered Ardoyne
Catholic Patrick McKenna.

The order was again criticised in 2003 after it allowed

a banner commemorating Robinson to be included in the
controversial Whiterock parade in west Belfast.

Further anger was caused after it emerged that the banner
had been carried by a member of the notorious Shankill
Butchers gang.

There was outrage in March 1999 after it emerged that the
man convicted of the murder of Co Down schoolboy James
Morgan was allowed to stay in the Orange Order. Norman
Coopey later resigned after public pressure.

In 2004 the order was forced to admit that it sat alongside
the UVF and UDA on the North & West Belfast Parades Forum.


David Hansen Challenged Over Orange Order Paramilitary Links

Published: 5 July, 2006

Sinn Féin Assembly member for North Antrim Philip McGuigan
has challenged the British Direct Rule Minister David
Hansen to comment, after two more convicted loyalist
paramilitaries were exposed as leading members of the
Orange Order. Mr McGuigan's comments come after David
Hansen decided to hand over £100,000 of taxpayers money to
the Orange Order.

Mr McGuigan said:

"The Orange Order has over many years been repeatedly
linked to unionist paramilitary death squads. Almost every
Orange Parade is accompanied by a band carrying regalia of
either the UDA or UVF. The Orange Order sits on the North
and West parades forum with both organisations. These are
undeniable facts.

"Also in recent years more and more convicted unionist
paramilitary figures, including those involved in sectarian
murders have been exposed as also holding Orange Order
membership, including members of the Shankill Butchers

"In the past month alone in court cases in both Scotland
and England convicted unionist paramilitaries from both the
UDA and UVF have been linked to the Orange Order. Last
month Stephen Moffett a self confessed UDA and Orange Order
member was jailed in Scotland. Yesterday in Liverpool two
self confessed UVF and Orange Order members were convicted
of series offences.

"I am calling on David Hansen the British Direct Rule
Minister who has decided to hand over £100,000 of tax
payers money to the Orange Order to comment on these latest
cases. Is he in any position to guarantee that this money
will not end up in the hands of unionist paramilitaries who
without doubt are prevalent within the Order. Silence form
the Minister on this matter is not an option." ENDS


Police Ombudsman Begins Investigation Into Lurgan PSNI Conduct

Published: 5 July, 2006

Sinn Féin Assembly member for Upper Bann John O'Dowd and
party Councillors Maurice Magill, Michael Talon and Mairead
O'Dowd today met with the Police Ombudsman to make a formal
complaint about the conduct of the PSNI in Lurgan on Friday
evening when they facilitated a loyalist crowd to erect
flags in the nationalist end of the town.

Mr O'Dowd said:

"There is currently a palpable anger within the nationalist
community in Lurgan at recent events.

On Friday night the PSNI facilitated well known loyalists
to erect flags in the nationalist end of the town.

On Saturday morning even more loyalist bunting was erected.

On Saturday night a loyalist parade coat trailed through
the town centre.

On Sunday night Catholic owned homes on the Antrim Road
were attacked by a loyalist mob and the PSNI failed to turn
up when contacted by a local resident.

Another loyalist parade is planned for the two this Friday
night and then another two are planned for the 12th.

"Today we asked that Police Ombudsman to investigate the
events of last Friday evening when the PSNI arrived in the
town centre in large numbers to facilitate known loyalist
paramilitaries to erect flags in the nationalist end of the

"We provided the Ombudsman with both video evidence and
testimony from those of us at the scene. I would also
appeal to anyone else present to make contact with the
Ombudsman‚s Office and assist her inquiry. The Police
Ombudsman has pledged to deal with this matter as speedily
as possible." ENDS


Unionism Needs To Wake Up To Reality Of Equality After Flags Ruling

Published: 5 July, 2006

Lagan Valley Sinn Féin Councillor Paul Butler today said
that unionism and the DUP in particular had to realise that
they can no longer do what they want, when they want, where
they want. Cllr. Butler's comments come after the Equality
Commission upheld a complaint by Cllr. Butler regarding the
decision of Lisburn Council to ignore equality provisions
and fly the Union Jack 365 days each year.

Cllr. Butler said:

"The fact that the Equality Commission upheld the complaint
I made regarding the flaunting of the Union Jack by Lisburn
City Council is in part a recognition of the changed times
we live in. The Good Friday Agreement is very clear about
the use of flags and emblems.

"Long gone are the days when political unionism in what
ever guise or in whatever institution can do what they
want, when they want, where they want. It is time that
political unionism and the DUP in particular woke up to
this reality.

"Nationalists and republicans will not accept a badge of
second class citizenship and we demand our full rights and
entitlements. The days of nationalists accepting inequality
are over. Sinn Féin are elected on a mandate to change the
status quo and that is exactly what we will do. We will not
be distracted or diverted from this project by the DUP or
anyone else." ENDS


Sectarianism 'Must Be Eradicated'

More needs to be done to eradicate sectarianism, the uncle
of a schoolboy killed in Ballymena has said.

Francis McIlveen's nephew Michael, 15, a Catholic, was
murdered in a sectarian attack in the town two months ago.

Mr McIlveen said young people needed to be made aware of
what it was really like growing up during the Troubles.

Mr McIlveen said he and ex-loyalist prisoner Marty Adams
had discussed the possibility of giving school lectures on
the dangers of sectarianism.

He said they planned to go to schools and "talk to the
young ones and give them an idea of what it was like in

"You know, the way their families had felt through the
Troubles. Just to let young boys know exactly what goes

Mr Adams said it was important to teach children to respect
other traditions.

"The most important thing is getting something for the
youth to do and getting into the hearts and minds of the
fathers and also the children," he said.

The attack on Michael McIlveen led to widespread shock and
cross-community condemnation both in the County Antrim town
and across Northern Ireland.

The teenager died one day after being attacked by a gang.

Six teenagers have been charged in connection with his

Story from BBC NEWS:
Published: 2006/07/05 12:42:40 GMT


Judge Refuses Shoukri’s Bail Bid

By Staff Reporter

Ihab Shoukri was refused bail yesterday after a judge said
he was satisfied the north Belfast loyalist was a leading
member of the UDA when he attended a rehearsal for a ‘show
of strength’.

Lord Justice Nicholson said the UDA was notorious for
criminal activity of all sorts and he was concerned that if
Shoukri was granted bail he would be a danger to the
community and there would be public disorder.

The judge added that he was satisfied by the evidence of a
handwriting expert

that Shoukri had written a three-page statement due to have
been read out in the Alexandra Bar the night after police
raided it and arrested 17 men in March.

Shoukri (32), whose address was given as Albertbridge Road,
Carrickfergus, is denying charges of membership of the
UDA/UFF and professing membership of the organisation.

His bail application had been adjourned from Friday, when
the court was told UDA leaders had discussed murdering him
on April 24 before announcing last month that he had been
expelled along with his brother Andre.

Charles MacCreanor, defending, submitted there was nothing
to distinguish his client from the others arrested in the
Alexandra Bar, all of whom were given bail.

He said the media had described Shoukri as the UDA’s
‘brigadier’ in north Belfast but there was no evidence to
support that.

But Charles McKay, prosecuting, told the High Court police
were opposed to bail on the basis that Shoukri would commit
further offences if released and because if an attempt was
made to kill him, members of the public would be put at

Lord Justice Nicholson said although he had refused bail,
it did not mean that Shoukri could not reapply to one of
the judges who had granted bail to his co-accused who were
arrested in the Alexandra Bar.


Sinn Féin Welcome British Retreat From Last Hilltop Spypost

Published: 5 July, 2006

Sinn Féin Assembly member for Newry and Armagh and the
party spokesperson on demilitarisation Davy Hyland has
welcomed the news that the British Army will have retreated
from their remaining hilltop spy post in South Armagh by
next week.

Mr Hyland said:

"I have been informed by the British government that the
British Army will have retreated from their last hilltop
spy post in South Armagh by next week. The land occupied by
the Forkhill post will then return to its rightful owners.

"It is obviously welcome that the British government have
finally got round to honouring their commitments regarding
removing their war apparatus from our community. However
outstanding issues do still remain. Chief amongst these is
the need for the British government to return the occupied
land to its rightful owners.

"Currently there are moves afoot by the Policing Board and
the PSNI to steal land currently occupied by the British
military in Crossmaglen, thereby preventing its return it
its rightful owners. This is unacceptable and Sinn Féin
have raised this matter with both governments." ENDS


NI Progress 'Threatened By Crime'

Paramilitary involvement in organised crime threatens
political progress in NI, a committee of MPs has said.

The NI Affairs Committee report into organised crime was
the result of more than six months of meetings taking
evidence from a wide range of sources.

Committee chairman Sir Patrick Cormack also said
paramilitaries were involved in human trafficking.

It concluded that all paramilitary organisations in the
province were involved in organised crime.

Sir Patrick added that paramilitaries were involved in a
wide range of criminal activity.

"Illegal fuel sales, which are at an unacceptably high
level, cigarette smuggling, counterfeit goods, illegal
dumping, armed robbery - there is a paramilitary
involvement in all of these things," he said.

"As well sadly, human trafficking, which is a new feature,
and in drugs.

NI economy

"Indeed, we have received quite astonishing evidence that
on occasions loyalists and republicans work together."

The report also said organised crime affected the Northern
Ireland economy more so than in other parts of the UK.

It also said it threatened political process in Northern
Ireland, warning that efforts to restore devolution would
be completely undermined by another Northern Bank robbery.

Its recommendations for combating organised crime included
a call on the government to urgently consider reducing fuel
duty in Northern Ireland to the same level as it is in the
Irish Republic.

The committee said this would deal a fatal blow to fuel

It also said efforts to tackle organised crime would be
significantly limited as long as Sinn Fein's refused to
support the PSNI.

Sir Patrick said: "The efforts of the PSNI will be limited
as long as Sinn Fein withholds its support for, and
recognition of, the legitimacy of the PSNI."

Money laundering

The committee also highlighted the failure of government to
move quickly enough to regulate charities following claims
that paramilitary groups were exploiting them to launder

Its report also expressed concern about the involvement of
professionals in organised crime, which, it said, was
becoming more sophisticated in the province.

"It is incumbent on the professional bodies, such as the
Law Society and the Institute of Chartered Accounts to
satisfy themselves that their membership requirements are
sufficiently rigorous and that observance of them is
carefully monitored," the committee said.

Story from BBC NEWS:
Published: 2006/07/05 11:12:33 GMT


NI Affairs Committee Has About As Much Credibility As The IMC

Published: 5 July, 2006

Sinn Féin MP for Newry and Armagh Conor Murphy said that
the NI Affairs Committee has about as much independence and
credibility as the discredited IMC.

Mr Murphy said:

"Given the make up and operation of this body nationalists
and republicans will place little credibility on anything
said in today‚s report. By their own admission it is based
entirely on secret conversations with the PSNI and ARA,
which is of course headed by a former member of Special
Branch. They have about as much credibility as John
Alderdice and his IMC in the eyes of the community I

"This committee travelled in secret to South Armagh a
number of weeks ago. They did not meet either with myself
as local MP or indeed more importantly with the community
in South Armagh. That fact says more than anything I can
say. There has for sometime been an agenda at work to
demonise the community in South Armagh, this effort is part
of that.

"Where criminality exists it is up to the courts to deal
with it. Interestingly of course there is no mention in
this report of ongoing efforts by the PSNI and Policing
Board to steal land belonging to residents in Crossmaglen
nor any reference to recent figures revealing over 200
convicted criminals within the ranks of the PSNI." ENDS


Bloody Sunday Inquiry Has Cost £400m, Claims Minister

05 July 2006

The Government was today under pressure to explain a
minister's claim that the Bloody Sunday Inquiry has now
cost around £400m - more than twice the most recent
estimate given to MPs in the House of Commons.

Downing Street is determined to resist calls for an
official inquiry into the July 7 London bombings and the
Culture Secretary Tessa Jowell has said it would be too
costly - claiming the eight-year inquiry into the Bloody
Sunday shootings had cost the taxpayer £400m.

DUP MP Gregory Campbell, a long-standing critic of the
Saville Inquiry, said it was ridiculous the Government was
using cost to argue against a July 7 inquiry into the
London bombings.

He also said he was shocked by estimates made by Ms Jowell,
placing the real cost of the inquiry at more than double
the £163m originally estimated.

He said: "They are not even holding an inquiry into the
July 7 bombings which happened just 12 months ago, and yet
they can hold an inquiry into something that occurred 34
years ago.

"People in England will justifiably be very angry at such
double standards.

"Anyone who lost relatives or friends in the London
bombings or who were injured in it and who will be trying
to get at the truth will be rightly angry."

Almost a decade since its inception, the Saville Inquiry is
no closer to fixing a date for the disclosure of its
report, and it is now believed that it will not unveil its
findings until next year.

Last November the Government put the cost of Lord Saville's
inquiry at £163m.

However, Ms Jowell said on BBC TV's Sunday AM programme
that "the latest estimate . . . is about £400m".

She said that a July 7 inquiry would cost "millions and
millions of pounds" and cause the diversion of enormous
security and intelligence resources.

The Saville Inquiry, ordered by Tony Blair in 1998, has
still not produced its report into the deaths of 14
civilians shot during a civil rights march in Londonderry
in January 1972.

The Northern Ireland Office today confirmed the real cost
of the Bloody Sunday Inquiry is less than half the £400m
claimed by Minister Tessa Jowell in her argument against a
similar tribunal into the London bombings.

The Culture Secretary today came under fire amid calls to
explain her claims - made on a BBC programme at the weekend
- on the cost of the Saville Tribunal.

The NIO today confirmed that the real cost of the Inquiry
stands at £163m - less than half this sum.

Downing Street opposes an official inquiry into the London
bombings of July 7, 2005.


Doherty Attends New York Rally

05 July 2006

Sinn Fein West Tyrone MP Pat Doherty has attended a massive
New York rally aimed at ending the expulsion of Irish
illegal immigrants from America.

There are currently over 40,000 "undocumented" Irish
believed to be resident in the US. Mr Doherty was
accompanied on the trip at the weekend by Dublin TD Sean

Speaking from America, and after meeting with senior US
Congressional and Senate leaders, including Ted Kennedy,
John McCain, Jim Walsh and Richard Neal to ask them to
continue with their efforts to resolve the issue of the
undocumented Irish in the United States, he commented: "We
have given the Irish Lobby for Immigration Reform our
support in the campaign to win legal status for the
estimated 40,000 plus undocumented Irish living and working
in the USA."


McGuinness On Peace Mission To Sri Lanka

By Justin Huggler
05 July 2006

Martin McGuinness, the Sinn Fein chief negotiator, is on a
new mission: to try to bring peace to the war-torn country
of Sri Lanka as it teeters on the brink of civil war.

Mr McGuinness, who this week flew by military helicopter
over the jungles of Sri Lanka into territory controlled by
the Tamil Tigers, is trying to persuade the rebels to
return to the negotiating table.

About 700 people have been killed in Sri Lanka since April,
more than half of them civilians. The Sri Lankan army's
third most senior general was assassinated in a suicide
bombing widely blamed on the Tigers last month. The Sri
Lankan government has carried out air strikes against
Tiger-held territory, and there are reports that the Tigers
are forcing civilians in the areas they control to undergo
military training.

Mr McGuinness said he was in Sri Lanka to try to persuade
both sides to return to negotiations that collapsed earlier
this year.

"I was able to share with the Tamil leadership the
experiences of the Irish peace process," he said in a
statement issued by Sinn Fein. "My core message was that
both sides need to act decisively to prevent the downward
spiral into all-out conflict. The reality is that, just as
in Ireland, there can be no military victory and that the
only alternative to endless conflict is dialogue,
negotiations and accommodation."

Mr McGuinness and Sinn Fein appear to be taking an interest
in conflict resolution around the world. His peace mission
to Sri Lanka comes after a similar visit to meet Basque
separatist leaders in Spain last month.

In Sri Lanka he is taking on one of the most intractable
conflicts in the world - and one of the bloodiest. At least
64,000 people were killed in the two-decade civil war,
before a Norwegian-brokered ceasefire was agreed in 2002, a
ceasefire that is crumbling.

Peace talks that began after the ceasefire collapsed, and
efforts to restart them have so far failed.

The Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) are fighting
for an independent homeland for Sri Lanka's Tamil minority
in the north and east of the island.

The Tigers have been blamed for a return to violence after
a series of attacks on Sri Lankan military personnel since
last December, although they deny responsibility for the


PSNI Appoints Scottish ACC For Public Inquiries

By Jonathan McCambridge
05 July 2006

A Scottish police officer has been appointed as an
Assistant Chief Constable in the PSNI because of pressures
on the force.

Alistair Finlay, currently serving with Strathclyde Police,
will take up the new position with responsibility around
the resourcing of public inquiries and other historical

He will be involved in work on a number of public inquiries
set to be held into controversial murders including Pat
Finucane, Rosemary Nelson, Robert Hamill and Billy Wright.

Earlier this year, the PSNI launched a Historical Enquiries
Team to investigate thousands of deaths related to the
security situation in Northern Ireland.

The Chief Constable will retain control of the unit.

Mr Finlay, who will become the sixth ACC within the PSNI,
will earn a wage of up to £92,829, plus allowances.

The Policing Board announced the new post yesterday.
Chairman Sir Desmond Rea said: "The Chief Constable
presented a detailed operational assessment to the Board
for a new ACC post based on current pressures facing the
Senior Officer Team and particularly around the resourcing
of historical investigations and public inquiries.

"The Board agreed with the Chief Constable's assessment of
the policing requirement for a dedicated ACC to look after
this area of work and the importance of this new post for
the community as a whole.

"The Board recognises and understands the complexities and
resourcing pressures on this area of police business and
does not want issues arising from dealing with past issues
impacting on current day-to-day service delivery."

Chief Constable Sir Hugh Orde admitted pressure on
resources caused by the public inquiries prompted the
appointment. He revealed officers were examining and
searching for thousands of documents and computer records
over a 30-year period.

He said: "It got to the stage where both myself and,
indeed, my Assistant Chief Constable (Crime Operations) are
taking more and more of our time to make sure this work is
managed and led properly, which is detracting from our
ability to police the present and indeed police the future.
We are determined to achieve both.

He added: "I think the important thing is that the service
is seen to support fully the inquiries that have been set
up by government."


Sworn on the fourth of July

BBC Apologises Over Gerry's On-Air Blast At Bush

By Maureen Coleman
05 July 2006

BBC Northern Ireland last night apologised after leading
Radio Ulster presenter Gerry Anderson told his listeners he
wanted George Bush "to rot in hell".

The Radio Ulster host was presenting his morning show
yesterday - July 4, US Independence Day - when he said it
was also the American President's birthday.

After telling his listeners Mr Bush had just turned 60, he
added: "May I say I hope you rot in hell".

Ironically, the popular presenter and Belfast Telegraph
columnist got the birth date wrong - the current President
celebrates his birthday tomorrow, July 6.

The US consulate described Mr Anderson's remarks as
"regrettable" but spokesman Peter McKittrick diplomatically
added: "Freedom of speech was one of the many values that
all Americans were celebrating yesterday."

Mr Anderson was yesterday unavailable for comment but a BBC
spokesman said: "We apologise for any offence caused."

One Radio Ulster listener, who contacted the Belfast
Telegraph, said: "I couldn't believe what I was hearing,
especially on Independence Day."

There were fears that Mr Anderson's comment may offend many
of the 62,500 US tourists who visit Ulster each year.

A spokeswoman from the Belfast Visitor Convention Bureau
said the comment could prove damaging to the province's
tourist industry.

But added: "However, people are still entitled to have
their own opinions on things and perhaps there may even be
some American visitors who agree with Mr Anderson."


Council 'Broke Equality Policy'

Lisburn City Council has failed to comply with its own
policy over flying the union flag, the Equality Commission
has found.

Council policy meant the flag could be only flown on 19
designated days at its civic headquarters and other

In response to a complaint by Sinn Fein councillor Paul
Butler, the commission found the council began to fly the
flag permanently at six properties in 2005.

Commissioner Bob Collins said they had failed to implement
their own rules.

"By adopting an equality scheme, Lisburn City Council has
made a public commitment to promote equality and good
relations in carrying out all of its functions," he said.

"If, having carried out an equality impact assessment into
a policy, they find that there is an adverse impact on any
group, they are committed to consider how they might reduce
that impact and to look at alternative policies.

"In this case, the commission's investigation has found
that the council did not fulfil those commitments, and we
have made recommendations to put that right. "

The commission has recommended the council confines the
display of the union flag to its civic headquarters, and
only on designated days.

DUP councillor Jeffrey Donaldson, the local MP, said it had
been part of his party's election mandate to change the
policy on flags in May 2005.

"The council voted by a majority to reinstate the former
policy - an equality impact assessment was carried out and
it was found that only 8% of staff at the civic centre had
a concern about this," he said.

Mr Butler said the Equality Commission's decision would
have implications for other councils that fly union flags
365 days a year.

"It's clear that Lisburn Council are in breach of equality
legislation under Section 75 (of the Good Friday
Agreement)," he said.

Story from BBC NEWS:
Published: 2006/07/05 06:48:35 GMT


Campbell Boycotts Election Of New Mayor In Castlebar

By: Marian Harrison

IN AN attempt to make a stand against the “cosy
arrangement” between Fianna Fáil, Fine Gael and Labour in
electing a Mayor for the county town, Cllr Noel Campbell
refused to attend last weeks meeting, which saw Cllr
Brendan Heneghan take the chain.

The Sinn Féin Councillor is adamant that the larger parties
are working together to ensure they hold the positions of
Mayor, Deputy Mayor and all committee places for the
lifetime of the Council.

Since his election in 2004, Cllr Campbell has proposed that
the position of Mayor be rotated between the Councillors
but his idea was voted down in 2004 and didn’t even get a
seconder last year.

“Right throughout the year, I and all the councillors co-
operate on all matters for the good of Castlebar. It’s
hypocrisy in the extreme that once a year when the
spotlight is on Castlebar Town Council these parties feel
they must exclude certain councillors from council
positions. Sinn Féin will not tolerate this exclusion in
Castlebar.” Instead of attending the meeting, Cllr Campbell
and members of Castlebar Sinn Féin spent the evening
picking up litter at Lough Lannagh in the town.

“I was elected to the council to serve the people of the
town not to take part in an annual charade. My time was
better spent improving the appearance of the lake than
taking part in something that was decided behind closed
doors two years ago.”

However, Cllr Campbell was adamant that his decision not to
attend the meeting was not a personal attack on the newly
elected Mayor or his Deputy.

“I wish Cllr Heneghan and Cllr McCormack well during their
term and congratulate Cllr Blackie Gavin for the energy he
put in to his year as Mayor of Castlebar.”

Meanwhile, Cllr Heneghan has outlined his major plans for
the town during the year ahead with the town centre being
put to the top of his list of priori-ties.

The Fine Gael Councillor, who owns a business on Main
Street insists that an area action plan for the Main Street
and its environs needs to be put in place, while a
sheltered bus stop at Flannery’s needs to be erected.

A river management plan to ensure the river and its banks
are kept clean, and another play area for the town are also
on his lists of requests.


Will Hogan Be Next Athlone Mayor?

By Jason Gill

A delighted John Butler was elected Mayor.

The voting pact between Fianna Fail and Sinn Fein
maintained control of the chair of Athlone Town Council on
Monday, with the widely expected election of Fianna Fail’s
Cllr John Butler as Mayor for the year 2006-07.

Cllr Paul Hogan secured the position of Deputy Mayor in
this, the second time he has supported a Fianna Fail
nominee for Mayor. This week’s vote raised the intriguing
possibility that the youthful Sinn Fein Councillor might
become Athlone’s next Mayor.

Cllr Butler was proposed for the position of Mayor by Cllr
Egbert Moran, and was supported ahead of Fine Gael’s Cllr
Nicky McFadden by Cllrs Molloy, Kevin Boxer Moran, Egbert
Moran and Hogan. Cllrs Mark Cooney, Austin Berry and Ray
Lennon supported Cllr. McFadden.

Councillors lined up in exactly the same way for the Deputy
Mayor vote, Cllr Hogan again taking the post ahead of Cllr

Receiving the chain of office from outgoing Mayor Kieran
Molloy, Mayor Butler pledged that every member would get a
right to express their point of view in the chamber during
his chairmanship. He said there were many projects
proceeding for the better of the town, and he appealed to
all councillors to work together.


Forum On Irish Freedom Struggle

Published Jul 5, 2006 6:32 AM

A forum on Irish revolutionary history entitled “The 1916
Rebellion, James Connolly and the 1981 Hunger Strikers”
drew a full house of multinational participants to the
Boston Workers World Party office on June 24.

A moving documentary video depicted the barbaric British
military occupation in Ireland’s occupied six northern
counties and the mass resistance in many forms. The video
also shows unity and solidarity actions between the Irish
national liberation movement and others, particularly
various Native tribes during the U.S. siege of Wounded Knee
in the 1970s.

Speakers emphasized the Irish masses’ resistance to English
colonialism since the 12th century, James Connolly’s legacy
and role in history, Irish Republican women and the
movement for socialism there. The relationships of Black
people living in the United States to both Irish Americans
and the Irish masses in the occupied six counties sparked a
discussion about self-determination and the national
question. There was also discussion about the ongoing
immigrant rights struggle and the U.S. war on Iraq.

Featured speakers shown here are, seated, traditional Irish
artist Padraig Dola, Bryan G. Pfeifer of WWP, Clemencia Lee
of the Boston Rosa Parks Human Rights Day Committee and
Maureen Skehan of WWP; standing, Catherine Donaghy of the
Western Mass International Action Center/Troops Out Now
coalition, longtime Irish Republican Movement activist Jan
Cannavan and Ed Childs of WWP.

—Workers World Boston bureau


Opin: Undocumented Have Lots Of Friends In High Places

By Ray O'Hanlon

When the British turned up in Washington back during the
war of 1812 they didn’t bother knocking on doors.

They kicked in the front door of the White House and burned
the place.

That’s one way of attracting attention in DC.

The small Irish army that turned up in the American capital
last week was rather more polite.

Rather than kick doors down and start fires, it knocked on
them with the purpose of firing up a few congressional
imaginations with regard to the tortuous issue of
immigration reform.

After their progress through the half dozen cavernous
buildings that house the offices of 435 members of the
House of Representatives and 100 senators, the ever so
polite door-knockers, members all of the Irish Lobby for
Immigration Reform, adjourned to the confines of a Capitol
Hill hotel for a rally that attracted some of those
legislators off the hilltop for a couple of hours of
rousing speeches and podium thumping.

As with the congressional office buildings, the hotel was,
mercifully, air-conditioned.

It was hot to the point of being combustible outside and it
was still only June.

DC is a red-hot place in summer. Immigration is a white-hot
political equivalent and one that will drag through the dog
days after House Republicans decided to hold a series of
committee hearings around the country.

The intent behind this almost unprecedented move would
appear to be stalling passage of a Senate immigration
reform bill – this by pouring public scorn on efforts to
provide a path to legalisation for millions of undocumented
immigrants, most of last week’s ILIR door-knockers
included, in that bill.

It is a measure of the contradictions that arise whenever
immigration is mentioned that the hotel rally was something
of a love fest between lawmakers and a crowd in large part
composed of lawbreakers.

But this was truly a meeting of minds, not a clash of right
versus wrong.

During the lobbying part of the day the ILIR hall-walkers
had been coolly received at some office doors, especially
House ones.

But in the Holiday Inn it was all warm and touchy stuff,
not forgetting that the predicament that so many in the
audience faced had, only days earlier, taken a serious turn
for the worse.

Still, the undocumented Irish all over the US would have
taken some comfort from the words thrown at their comrades
by three US senators and four congressmen.

“I’m going to fight for reform,” Senator Edward Kennedy
promised the cheering throng.

Responding to house speaker Dennis Hastert’s plan for the
nationwide hearings, Massachusetts congressman Jim McGovern
said no such hearings were needed.

“We don’t need more hearings but comprehensive immigration
reform,” he said.

“We need to embrace what the Senate passed and get rid of
the garbage that the House passed.”

Senator Sam Brownback of Kansas, a relative unknown to
Irish-American audiences, drew inspiration from former
president Ronald Reagan.

He described America as a special nation with a special
calling. If any walls were to be erected, he said, they
should include doors.

A fitting metaphor.

Senator John McCain said the reason why America remained
the most bountiful nation in the world was because of

“I’m proud to be in your company. Continue your efforts.
You are speaking eloquently for millions. God bless you and
keep up the fight,” McCain concluded.

The meeting was addressed by several members of a multi-
party delegation of visiting Irish politicians from both
sides of the border.

The group was made up of Fianna Fail’s John Cregan and
Paschal Mooney, Simon Coveney, Michael Ring and Paul
Connaughton of Fine Gael, Sinn Fein’s Sean Crowe and the
SDLP’s PJ Bradley.

Bradley brought with him messages of support from the
mayors of Belfast, Derry and Newry.

Certainly, the undocumented in the room were reminded that,
despite the gravity of the hour, they have a lot of friends
in high places.

But not everybody is on their side.

One intriguing suggestion made at the rally was that
whenever Hastert’s field hearings take place, the Irish
campaigners should show up at the door.

Not a bad idea, although any such emissaries might want to
be legally present in the US.

Not every room is as accommodating as the one in the
Holiday Inn filled to the doors as it was with people who
could scant think of any holiday at all in the foreseeable


Opin: Pressure Must Be Kept On Republicans - Dawson

Speaking to a group of students from Fordham University in
New York at Queen’s University, East Antrim DUP Assembly
Member George Dawson said,

“Northern Ireland today is a very different place than it
was even five or ten years ago. I hope and believe that we
are closer to a political settlement today that we have
been at any point in the past and that to the next
generation here the Troubles will be history and not

Progress towards a totally peaceful society here has been
slow. It took the IRA over ten years since its first
ceasefire to decommission in any substantial way and call
for an end to its activities. For loyalist paramilitaries
progress has been even slower and much needs to be done.

The single greatest obstacle to political progress over the
last decade has been the refusal of the paramilitary groups
to give up their criminal and paramilitary activities once
and for all.

Instead of completing the transition to a totally peaceful
and democratic existence they have continued to be involved
in illegal activity. Only when the DUP became the largest
political party in Northern Ireland and made it clear that
there could be no halfway house between democracy and
paramilitary activity did we start to see real movement
which has brought progress.

There is now a large measure of agreement in relation to
the political and constitutional arrangements for the next
generation at least. Northern Ireland's position as part
of the United Kingdom may not be welcomed by nationalists
but it is now largely accepted that it will not change
without the support of the people of Northern Ireland.
Equally the fact that there must be a role in Government in
Northern Ireland for nationalists is now widely accepted by
the unionist community.

I do not believe that there can be a stable administration
in Northern Ireland while Sinn Fein do not support the
police and the justice system here. The fact that Sinn
Fein would discourage someone who has been raped or
attacked from reporting it to the police shows just how far
they still have to come in their transition to democracy.

I would like to see the return of devolution as soon as
possible. There is no community which has more to gain
from a successful form of Government in Northern Ireland
than the unionist community and no party has more to gain
than the DUP but this can only happen when the conditions
are right.

There are other issues to be resolved such as the detailed
arrangements of how the Assembly works which are a pre-
requisite for devolution – which I believe were largely
settled in 2004 – but the real key is the movement of
republicans to exclusively political means.

This is a process which has made considerable progress but
is not yet complete.

The Independent Monitoring Commission was set up in order
to assess, among other things the activities of
paramilitary organisations. Their reports, especially
since the IRA statement last July and decommissioning last
autumn, have indicated progress but they have not indicated

Of course Sinn Fein don’t accept the legitimacy of the IMC.
In the same way that they claim that the 2004 Northern Bank
robbery, at the time the largest bank robbery in British
history was not carried out by the IRA.

Their view not accepted by anyone outside the republican
community. Indeed the Prime Minister of the Republic of
Ireland in 2005 said not only was the robbery carried out
by the IRA but in an interview for RTÉ's 'This Week'
programme, he said 'This was an IRA job, a Provisional IRA
job which would have been known to the political

In these circumstances it is easy to see why we believe
there is still work to be done before Sinn Fein should be
entitled to a position in any Government in Northern

There are those who argue that change from republicans in
more likely when they are brought into Government and it is
shown that ‘politics works’. This argument was shown to be
flawed by the fact that even after the Belfast Agreement in
1998 and while their Ministers sat in Government IRA
activity continued including murders, extortion, spying,
robberies training FARC terrorists in Colombia and gun
running from Florida among other things.

The history of the last decade has shown that the IRA only
moves under pressure and when it has no choice. I believe
that the same can be the case again, but only if the
pressure is kept on them."


Opin: Terrorism Is Now A Global Franchise

When Bobby Sands comitted suicide America was outraged

By Lindy McDowell
05 July 2006

When the three detainees held at Guantanamo recently
committed suicide, a US government spokesperson called it
an act of asymmetrical terrorism. What struck some of us in
Northern Ireland was the symmetry with our own history of

Not to mention America's asymmetrical reaction to events
both here - and in their own backyard.

For when Bobby Sands, convicted before a court of law of
the terrorist bombing of a civilian target, committed
suicide in the Maze (a prison facility which, compared to
Guantanamo, was a health spa) America was outraged.

There were vigils on the streets. Angry demonstrations.
Calls from leading US politicians for action against the
British government.

The sort of things, in other words, which haven't happened
since the three detainees (and they were merely detainees)
topped themselves at Guantanamo.

Irish America described the dead hunger strikers of the
Maze as freedom fighters, dug deep in its pocket and
provided the IRA with the money to buy weapons that
murdered hundreds of civilians.

But it was also used to perfect the terrorist bomb
technology which, to give just one example, was then copied
by Timothy McVeigh when he massacred the innocents of
Okalahoma. Again a certain symmetry there.

This week America has been celebrating its Independence
Day. That's independence, incidentally, from Britain, the
country the US currently relies upon for support in Iraq.

The flags and bunting fly in a profusion that makes
Belfast's Sandy Row look understated. Americans, recently
revealed by a survey to be the most patriotic people on
earth, need no encouragement to rally to Old Glory.

But the celebrations are again tinged with the ongoing
debate about their ongoing "war on terror".

And once again the symmetry with our own experience in
Northern Ireland is marked.

The talk in the bars is about how far security forces
should be allowed to go in the use of informants and spying

Questions have been raised about the role of the media in
highlighting exactly what security services have been up

The US is facing the possibility that the FBI may have
broken up a cell of home-grown terrorists loyal to al-

Young men raised in the US, prepared to launch terror
within the US, targeting US civilians. It is a chilling
thought for America. If it's true ... According to an
informant, the men involved, all black and from the Miami
area, were planning to blow up the Sears Tower in Chicago.
According to the defence, the young men were in fact led on
by the informant who encouraged them to swear an oath to

Apparently, they also inquired about the possibility of him
fixing them up with al-Qaida uniforms - a hint that they
might not have been the sharpest activists on the block.

Meanwhile, America is also wrestling with the issue of
freedom of the Press.

The New York Times has taken considerable flak for
revealing details of how the Treasury Department has been
working with the CIA to examine international money
transfer records for evidence of terrorist links. The paper
recently also revealed details of telephone surveillance.

Most savvy terrorists, you'd think, would already
automatically assume that the Government was tapping phones
and searching for signs of dodgy money transactions.

But this hasn't stopped some US politicians wanting to
shoot the media messenger.

Among them has been the chairman of the Homeland Security
Committee, Peter King, who has called it treason and
demanded the paper be prosecuted. Yup, that Peter King. The
Peter King who was for such a long time such a stalwart
supporter of Sinn Fein and the IRA.

Another example of asymmetrical American thinking.

Terrorism is now a global franchise. The conflict in
Northern Ireland was the training ground for not just the
terrorist techniques which are today shared worldwide, but
also for the counter terrorist strategies employed against

As they deal with the terrorist threat in their own
backyard, Americans may come then to see what happened here
from a different perspective. One which lets them see that
between the development of terrorism in Northern Ireland
and its spread to their own place, there is a certain,
striking symmetry.


Opin: Somme Lines Re-Drawn

By Gail Walker
04 July 2006

Among the several anniversaries of some political relevance
in Northern Ireland this year - the Easter Rising, the
hunger strikes - the 90th anniversary of the Battle of the
Somme casts the longest shadow at home and abroad.

The human scale of the carnage and its impact on the
society and shape of Europe has been well documented.

For a range of reasons, the significance of the battle has
been acknowledged by the unionist community in Northern
Ireland since it happened.

In the Republic, it is only in recent years that the role
Irishmen from there played has been officially recognised
or commemorated. The memory of the fallen from a
nationalist tradition was ignored at best, slighted at
worst. And it fared little better among the decades of
commemorations in Northern Ireland.

Now, there is a consensus at official level in Dublin that,
to be part of the wider European community as well as to
salve old wounds north and south, the nation needs to come
to grips even with this most sensitive aspect of its

The impressive ceremony at the Irish National War Memorial
Gardens at Islandbridge, attended by the taoiseach and the
president, does show the new maturity of the state and much
of that is down to the leadership of the much-maligned
Bertie Ahern.

It is down to Ahern that the Irish army played such a key
role in setting the tone both for this Somme commemoration
and, earlier in the year, at the Easter Rising ceremony in

It was only those legitimate defence forces of the state
which could equally and without fear or favour honour the
'rebels' of 1916 and the volunteers of Redmond's recruits
in 1914-18.

For anyone who doubts that maturity, who could have
imagined, even a few years ago, that the likes of DUP MLA
Jim Wells would be able to attend such an occasion in the
very heart of the Republic?

More generally, it might be churlish to complain, I
suppose, that the 90th anniversary of the slaughter was
overshadowed by a ridiculous football match in Germany.
After all, isn't it much better that England's prowess is
tested in something as frivolous as sport than that it is
put to the sword on the battlefield?

But, given the day it was, was it not surprising that there
was no minute's silence at either of the matches? After
all, the 1914-18 war directly involved four of the eight
nations in the quarter-finals of the World Cup - Germany,
France, England and Italy - and I'm sure Portugal and
Ukraine had more than a passing interest at the time. There
was something very odd about seeing the French president,
Jacques Chirac, doing his duty at his country's clash with
Brazil in Frankfurt, while Prince Charles was addressing
the official commemorations in France.

And it's a pity, too, that, while Wayne Rooney was
indulging in his stamping antics in Gelsenkirchen, two UK
soldiers were being killed for their country in

Guess which story made the front pages.

Of course, it was a long time ago (but not quite as long as
all that). And it may be too much to expect fit, young men
to spend even a moment of their wealthy, pampered,
privileged lives reflecting on the sacrifice of tens of
thousands of other fit, young men who didn't fail to
deliver what was expected of them.

Which is all the more reason to recognise the likes of our
own Eddie Irvine - former Ferrari Formula One ace, multi-
millionaire and controversial international playboy - who
had enough sense of the importance of the occasion to turn
up quietly and with dignity for the service at Thiepval

You can't force people to do the right thing, now or then,
whether it's in Belfast, Dublin or Thiepval. You can only
salute them when they do.


Irish American Arts Awards Shortlist
/ Pallas temporary reprieve (Tuesday 4 July 2006)

Compiled By Jessica Foley


The Irish American Arts Awards were launched in January of
this year to recognize, encourage and celebrate
contemporary visuall art being produced by artists of the
80-million-strong Irish Diaspora worldwide.

The names of those artists who are short-listed for the
Awards in the under-35 category are: Katie Holten, New
York; Suzanne Mooney, Dublin; Katrina Moorhead, Houston;
Niamh O'Malley, Dublin; and Paul Rowley, Brooklyn.

Those short-listed in the over-35 Category are: Meg
Cranston, Los Angeles, Maud Cotter, Co.Cork; Maureen
Gallace, New York; Mary Kelly, Wicklow; Tom Molloy,
Kilfenora. An awards ceremony is to be held annually in
Manhattan, with the first in September 2006. The judging
panel for the awards are: Declan McGonagle (Chairman), Colm
Ó Briain, Cheryl Donegan, Vincent Ferguso Vincent Ferguson,
Emily-Jane Kirwan, Alice Maher, Yvonne Scott.

For more information about the awards and application
procedures visit
(According to the website, "a main prize of $25,000 and
subsidiary awards are planned.")

Pallas Studios update: stay of execution

After a meeting with Dublin City Council Pallas Studios has
been given a stay of execution on Sean Treacy house. The
Council has agreed to allow Pallas to use the flats until
the end of 2006, and Pallas will re-use these spaces as
arts studios with immediate effect. However Pallas Heights
will not re-open as an exhibition space. While the artists
in the studios gladly welcome the decision by the City
Council, it is in effect a temporary measure, and the
studios still face the future with no long-term security
for the artists.

Pallas Studios main studio on Foley street, which is rented
from a private landlord and which houses fourteen artists,
is to close by the end of the week (30 June 2006). Pallas
Studios are seeking continuity on their lease for their
office, so their postal address remains the same. Pallas
Studios was founded in 1996 to serve as a multi-functional
artists' space for both creating and exhibiting work.



New Nature Reserve Opens In Belfast Hills

By Claire Simpson

The north’s newest nature reserve was officially opened
yesterday under clear blue skies and blistering sunshine.

Slievenacloy Nature Reserve in the Belfast hills, which is
managed by the Ulster Wildlife Trust (UWT), is home to a
large variety of animal and plant life including orchids,
Irish hares and curlews.

The site had been earmarked as a plantation forest by the
Forest Service but was saved after a UWT member recognised
its environmental significance.

It cost £280,000 over three years to plant over 25,000 new
trees and build 18km of fences and gates.

The reserve is also helping to preserve traditional cattle
breeds like the Irish Moiled cattle – one of the rarest
breeds in the world.

Slievenacloy warden Cathe-

rine Bertrand said the UWT wanted to make more people aware
of the natural world.

“We often feel people don't visit things which are actually
on their doorstep,” she said.

“We have to guide them by putting up wildlife signs and
holding tours but once they have come up they can take some
of the information home with them.”

She said although the reserve did not have any rare
species, it was designated as an Area of Special Scientific

Heather Thompson, UWT chief executive, said the charity
hoped Slievenacloy could link up with other reserves around


Cancer ‘Most Likely In Dublin’

By Valerie Robinson Southern Correspondent

Dubliners are more likely to be affected by cancer than
people anywhere else in the Republic.

The National Cancer Registry (NCR) revealed that almost 400
new cases per 100,000 people were diagnosed in Dublin city
and county between 1998 and 2000, compared to a

state-wide average of 363.

Carlow and Kildare recorded the highest death rates from
cancer – 225 and 224 deaths per 100,000 respectively,
compared to a national average of 203.

The figures showed that Co Clare had the lowest number of
newly-diagnosed cases and death rates in the south.

Lung cancer claimed more lives in Dublin than elsewhere,
while the city was also in the top five for new cases of
breast and prostate cancer.

NCR director Dr Harry Comber blamed smoking and other
lifestyle issues as well as cancer screening for the higher
incidence of cancer in the Dublin region.

Meanwhile, Labour’s Dr Mary Upton claimed the health of
Irish consumers was at risk from beef imported from
countries where use of cancer-causing hormones was “rife”.


MRSA Infections Up 7% To 592 Last Year

05/07/2006 - 08:38:55

The number of hospital patients infected with the MRSA
'superbug' reportedly increased by almost 40 last year.

Reports this morning said figures released under the
Freedom of Information Act showed that 592 patients
contracted the illness in 2005, compared to 553 in 2004.

The largest number (58) were reportedly recorded at St
James’s Hospital in Dublin.

This morning’s reports said the figures disclosed by the
Health Protection Surveillance Centre also show that more
than 1,200 patients were diagnosed last year with another
infection that the head of the HSE has described as "a
bigger killer than MRSA".

The infection, Clostridium Diifficile, is reportedly
associated with the use of antibiotics and can be life-
threatening in severe cases.

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