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de Brún to attend Bobby Sands Vigil

5 May, 2009 - by Martina Anderson MEP

Sinn Fein MEP Bairbre de Brún will attend the Bobby Sands Vigil in West Belfast today, Tuesday 5th May at 5pm to mark the 28th anniversary of Bobby Sands’ death.   Speaking ahead of the event Ms de Brún said:   “"The conditions which led to the Hunger Strikes were created when the British government tried to criminalise Irish republicans. But the republican prisoners – young women in Armagh jail and young men in the H-Blocks - bravely took on the might of the British state.    “Like many republicans, I first became actively involved in politics through the H-Block and Armagh campaign of the late 70’s and early 80’s. The prison protest and the hunger strikes were a hugely emotive time in Irish history and, like many others, I felt I had to do something to make a difference and to make my voice heard.   "Twenty eight years ago, while the establishment sat in silence, people across Ireland stopped work, young people walked out of school, many businesses closed and tens of thousands took to the streets.    "The legacy of 1981 hunger strikers is still unfolding. Bobby Sands once said, ‘everyone, republican or otherwise, has their own particular part to play. No part is too great or too small; no one is too old or too young to do something’.   “Bobby Sands and his nine comrades who gave their lives in 1981 were ordinary men in extraordinary times. Progressive movements across the world have for nearly three decades taken their inspiration from this time in Irish republican history. And the politics of 1981 continues to inspire and influence republicans today in our pursuit of a united Ireland of equals.” ENDS

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