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Sinn Féin Assembly delegation to visit Rossport

1 September, 2005

A Sinn Féin Assembly delegation led by Assembly Chief Whip Philip McGuigan MLA (North Antrim) and Francie Brolly MLA (East Derry) will visit the relatives of the Rossport 5 in Mayo tomorrow, September 2nd.

Speaking ahead on the fact finding mission, Philip McGuigan said:

"The issue of the Rossport 5 and the way that the Dublin government has sold off one of Ireland's most important natural resources is one that effects everyone living on this island.

"It is an opportunity to express solidarity with the men and their families, and all of those who have been campaigning for their freedom and to reiterate Sinn Féin's call for the immediate release of the men.

"It is clear that many politicians past and present have a number of serious questions to answer in relation to this whole fiasco. The role of former disgraced Minister Ray Burke and successive Ministers with responsibility for our natural resources, who have given away the rights to our gas reserves and natural resources for next to nothing needs to be fully examined.

"The deal Mr Dempsey offered Shell last week in issuing Exploration Licences in the North East Rockall Basin is the latest in a long line of questionable deals brokered by successive Irish governments.

"Protection of valuable Irish energy resources from exploitation is essential if we are to guarantee the long-term sustainability and stability of the emerging all-Ireland energy market." ENDS

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