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Charles Windsor visit to Crumlin Road offensive

3 September, 2004

West Belfast Sinn Féin Assembly member Michael Ferguson has criticised those who organised a visit to the Crumlin Road prison yesterday by Charles Windsor on the 62nd Anniversary of the execution by the British state of IRA Volunteer Tom Williams.

Mr Ferguson said:

"Obviously nationalists and republicans have no affection or interest in the activities of British royals like Charles Windsor. There are people within the unionist community who of course do value for whatever reason the concept of a monarchy. Those organising royal visits to the six counties need to take this into account and keep the offence caused to nationalists and republicans by these visits to a minimum.

"However many Belfast republicans are extremely angry and upset at the sight of Charles Windsor parading through the Crumlin Road Prison on the anniversary of the execution by the British state of IRA Volunteer Tom Williams.

"As we witnessed with the massive crowds who attended the reburial of Tom Williams in Milltown cemetery, Tom Williams holds a special place in the hearts of republicans throughout this city and elsewhere.

"The decision to send Charles Windsor into the Crumlin Road prison on his anniversary was either a calculated insult or an act of complete incompetence by those organising the trip. Either way the presence of Charles Windsor in the prison on that particular day was offensive and republicans are owed an explanation for it." ENDS

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