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Sinn Féin to continue campaign against current Corrib gas field project

3 October, 2005


The Sinn Féin spokesperson on Justice, Equality & Human Rights, Aengus Ó Snodaigh TD has committed the Party to continuing its opposition to the current Corrib gas field project, not only on health and safety grounds, but also in relation to the 'give-away terms and conditions' that govern gas exploration in the state. Deputy Ó Snodaigh also totally rejected allegations made that Sinn Féin had exploited the imprisonment of the five Rossport men. He was responding to claims made on last night's RTE's 'Week in Politics' by Enda Kenny and Mary Hanafin.

Deputy Ó Snodaigh said: „Sinn Féin‚s interest in the Corrib gas field is not new. For years, we have consistently called for a radical review of the terms governing mineral exploration here. Since being elected in 2002 Martin Ferris, our spokesperson on the issue, has placed numerous questions on all aspects of the Corrib project, many of them at the request of local people. Sinn Féin supporters, along with thousands of others, have campaigned for the release of the men and the men and their families know that this involvement was genuine on our part. Indeed it is significant that of all opposition politicians only Enda Kenny has been specifically mentioned by the men as having played a negative role while they were in jail.

"Enda Kenny's pathetic attack on my party last night clearly indicates how desperate he is to save face from what has been a disaster from his point of view. Instead of standing up for the community of Rossport and surrounding areas against Shell aggression Enda chose to side with the multi-national. And now that his position has been exposed he once again lapses into that old Fine Gael tradition of trying to shift the negative focus on to republicans. I think the people of Mayo and Rossport in particular are wise enough to see through his bluster and see what a wretched role he has played in this whole saga.

"For our part Sinn Féin will continue to be actively involved in this issue and to insist that not only are the health and safety concerns of the Rossport community addressed before the project proceeds, but that the give-away terms and conditions governing gas and oil exploration in the state are subject to a full review and overhaul to ensure that the Irish people are given a proper share in our natural resources." ENDS

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