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Anger at re-jailing of Belfast republican

19 June, 2005

Sinn Féin North Belfast MLA Gerry Kelly has said that the arrest of North Belfast Republican Sean Kelly and the revoking of his licence is a deplorable decision and accused the British Secretary of State of acquiescing to the demands of unionists and securocrats opposed to the Peace Process.

Mr Kelly said:

"Sean Kelly has done nothing to warrant this harsh decision and should be released without delay.

"This was a calculated decision that will increase tensions in North Belfast and elsewhere in the middle of the marching season. It was a cynical decision.

"It was a serious mistake for Peter Hain to acquiesce to the demands of unionists and securocrats opposed to the Peace Process in signing the order for Mr Kelly‚s licence to be revoked.

"Mr Hain will compound this error of judgement unless he acts to reverse this decision. Deliberate attempts by anti-agreement securocrats and unionists to undermine the peace process should be resisted by Irish government.

"Mr Kelly was released under the Good Friday Agreement and has played an important role in support of the Agreement and the peace process. He has also played an invaluable and positive role in keeping the situation calm at interfaces in North Belfast."ENDS

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