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Ferris supports farmers protest against Mandelson

8 November, 2005

The Sinn Féin Spokesperson on Agriculture and Food, Martin Ferris TD, has stated that he fully supports the demands of farmers who are protesting in Dublin today against EU Trade Commissioner Peter Mandelson's proposals to offer cuts in farm supports as part of negotiations at the World Trade Organisation.

Deputy Ferris said: "When the reform of the Common Agricultural Policy was agreed two years ago the clear understanding was that no changes would be made to the projected budget until at least 2013. Farmers in this country only agreed to the changes and to the decoupled Single Farm Payment on the basis that this degree of income security was built into the deal.

"Commissioner Mandelson, however, in proposing to make agriculture the sacrificial lamb in any WTO deal, is threatening to break that agreement and to undermine the livelihoods of hundreds of thousands of farmers in the EU. The Irish Government must let him know in no uncertain terms that this is not acceptable and that the terms of the CAP reform must be adhered to." ENDS

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