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Cowen neglects collusion victims but welcomes Commander-in-Chief of British Army – Ó Caoláin

23 June, 2010 - by Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin TD

Sinn Féin Dáil leader Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin TD has described as “totally unacceptable” the Taoiseach Brian Cowen’s welcome for a visit to Ireland by the Queen of England, Commander-in-Chief of the British Army. The Taoiseach’s welcome came on the day he refused in the Dáil to give a commitment to raise the issue of collusion with the British Prime Minister.

Deputy Ó Caoláin said:

“It is totally unacceptable that the Taoiseach is, on the one hand, welcoming and preparing for a visit to Ireland by the Queen of England, Commander-in-Chief of the British Army, while on the other hand he refuses to pursue the British Prime Minister and the British government on the issue of collusion.

“Only this morning in the Dáil the Taoiseach refused to give a commitment to me to raise with David Cameron the all-party Dáil motion on collusion passed nearly two years ago on 10 July 2008. This motion called on the British government to give to an international judicial figure all files in its possession relating to the Dublin and Monaghan bombings of May 1974, in which 33 people died, and other acts of collusion in the 26 Counties during the conflict. The Taoiseach admitted that he had failed to raise this with Gordon Browne during his premiership.

“While the Saville Report was a welcome development in vindicating the dead of Bloody Sunday it was only the tip of the iceberg of British state killings in Ireland.

“Sinn Féin opposes the proposed state visit of the Queen of England, Commander-in-Chief of the British armed forces. Until there is complete withdrawal of the British military and the British administration from Ireland, and until there is justice and truth for victims of collusion, no official welcome should be accorded to any officer of the British armed forces of any rank.” ENDS

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