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Paisley remarks mirror those of Douglas Hogg prior to murder of Pat Finucane

25 January, 2006

Sinn Féin Assembly member for North Belfast Gerry Kelly today said that Ian Paisley's remarks linking local solicitors to IRA activity mirrored those made by former British Minister Douglas Hogg which preceded the killing of Pat Finucane.

Mr Kelly said:

"Given the history of Douglas Hogg's remarks linking solicitors to the IRA and the fact that within days of his infamous statement in the British House of Commons unionist paramilitaries in collusion with British State agencies had murdered Pat Finucane, Ian Paisley's statement yesterday evening was to say the least highly irresponsible and highly dangerous.

"Unionist paramilitaries in the north have in the past demonstrated a willingness to kill solicitors and human rights lawyers. It is also a well documented fact that unionist paramilitary organisations have claimed that they looked to the DUP leader for direction. Paisley‚s claim like Hogg‚s before him has no basis in fact for his statement and it is deliberately placing members of the legal profession here in a very dangerous situation.

"Ian Paisley should immediately withdraw his remarks and seek to minimise the undoubted damage and offence which he has already caused." ENDS

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