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Adams - IRA cessation gave birth to hope and expectation

31 August, 2004

Speaking on the tenth anniversary of the IRA cessation, Sinn Féin President Gerry Adams said that the cessation 'gave birth to enormous hope and expectation for the future'.

Mr Adams said:

" Ten years ago the IRA cessation gave birth to enormous hope and expectation for the future and the then embryonic peace process was given significant impetus.

" The length of the IRA cessations, its discipline in the face of ongoing British military and loyalist activities, and its initiatives to sustain the current process, show that it is genuinely interested in building the peace process.

" Ten years on and the peace process amounts to no more than the cessations, with many question marks over the loyalist cessations.

" The political institutions have been in suspension for well over a year and a half. The Good Friday Agreement has been breached repeatedly by the British government and much of the essential aspects of that agreement, on human rights and equality, on policing and justice matters and demilitarisation, have not been implemented.

" Against that there has been progress and much good work has been done. There is no gain saying this, and although progress has been too slow it has to be built upon. Therefore as we mark the10th anniversary of the IRA cessation there is a heavy onus on all of the political parties, though especially Sinn Féin and the DUP, and on the two governments, but particularly the British government, to agree measures within the terms of the Good Friday Agreement that can bring all outstanding issues to a definitive and conclusive closure. Not an easy task. But one nonetheless that those of us who want progress must bend our will to in the time ahead." ENDS

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