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‘Secret MI5 policy a damning indictment’ - Dillon

5 October, 2018 - by Linda Dillon

Revelations before a London tribunal that MI5 knowingly allowed its agents to participate in murder, torture, sexual assaults and other criminality, are a damning indictment of the British state’s involvement in the conflict here, Sinn Féin MLA Linda Dillon has said.

The Sinn Féin Victims Spokesperson was commenting after the Investigatory Powers Tribunal – which is investigating the role of the British Intelligence agencies – heard evidence of a secret policy that enabled MI5 agents to participate in a wide range of illegal activity.

“The revelations before the tribunal yesterday are a damning indictment of the British State’s role in the conflict here,” Linda Dillon said.

 “A heavily redacted copy of an MI5 document, entitled ‘Guidelines on the use of agents who participate in criminality’ was produced and gave a startling indication of the extent to which the British State was prepared to condone illegality and impunity for their agents.

“The document shows that the British state sought to give MI5 legal cover for its agents to participate in crimes including murder, torture and sexual assaults.

“This policy has been in place since the early 1990's and was developed with a view to protecting the British state agencies active in the conflict here. It was only in 2012 on the eve of the Da Silva report exposing the role of agents in Pat Finucane’s murder that the then British Prime Minister David Cameron belatedly produced new and frankly inadequate guidelines for oversight of intelligence agencies.

“This case, which has been brought by Privacy International, Reprieve, the Committee on the Administration of Justice and the Pat Finucane Centre, has already shone a light on the role of British intelligence agencies in Ireland.

“It once again exposes the malevolent part they played in the conflict and the importance of ensuring that all agencies, including MI5 and the NCA are properly accountable for their actions.”

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