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Martin McGuinness pays tribute to Maggie Hughes

19 February, 2008

Sinn Féin MP for Mid Ulster Martin McGuinness has today paid tribute to Maggie Hughes the mother of IRA Hunger Striker Francis Hughes who passed away earlier today.

Mr McGuinness said:

"I was greatly saddened when I heard the news today that Maggie Hughes, mother of former IRA Volunteer and Hunger Striker Francis Hughes had passed away.

"During very difficult and dangerous times Maggie and her husband Joe stepped forward at great personal loss to themselves and their family.

"She was a proud and strong Irishwoman and a solid Republican who stood firmly behind her son, as Francis and his comrades faced down Margaret Thatcher and her criminalisation policy in Long Kesh in 1981.

"Coming so soon after the death of Alfie Doherty the father of Kieran, Republicans across Ireland, but particularly in South Derry, will feel a great sense of loss at this news.

"On behalf of the Sinn Féin leadership I would like to extend my deepest condolences to Maggie's husband Joe and large family circle at this difficult time." ENDS

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