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Crowe raises the continued imprisonment of John Downey

26 June, 2013 - by Seán Crowe TD


Sinn Féin’s spokesperson on Foreign Affairs, Trade, and Diaspora, Seán Crowe TD, has raised the continued imprisonment of John Downey in Belmarsh Prison, with the Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade, Eamon Gilmore, in the Dáil today.

Crowe, who is also a member of the Joint Committee on the Implementation of the Good Friday Agreement, used his parliamentary question time with the Tánaiste to raise the issue and called on him to raise the issue with the British Government and request John’s immediate release.

Deputy Crowe said:

“John Downey is a member of Sinn Féin and a long-time supporter of the peace process, and his arrest goes against the spirit of the Good Friday Agreement and breaches the commitments that the British Government gave at Weston Park.

“I discussed John’s arrest with the Tánaiste in the Dáil today and I welcome his commitment to follow John’s case closely and to ensure that he receives all the consular assistance he needs.

“However, the Tánaiste and the government need to ensure that John Downey is released and allowed to return home to his family immediately.

“John’s arrest and treatment represents a departure from what was previously agreed by both governments. All this is doing is undermining the peace process and it doesn’t benefit anyone, accept those who want the peace process to fail.

“The Tánaiste needs to strongly remind the British Government of the commitments it signed up to, and that his Government won’t sit idly by while they break these mutually agreed guarantees.”

ENDS

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