Sinn Féin representatives comment on the death of former MEP and TD Niall Andrews
Sinn Féin’s Seán Crowe TD and Caitríona Ruane MLA have expressed their condolences on behalf of the party to the family and friends of Niall Andrews on his passing. Both highlighted Mr Andrews’ life-long commitment to human rights in Ireland and around the world.
Deputy Crowe said: “Many republicans will remember Niall Andrews as a man who did not let party political affiliations stand in the way of a genuine commitment to human rights in Ireland, and further afield. His attendance 25 years ago at the funeral of Bobby Sands after his death on hunger-strike was a sign of respect and solidarity with a beleaguered community ignored by so many in the South.
“Throughout the 1980s he was active in the Irish Anti-Apartheid movement and in CND, and opposed the Saddam Hussein regime in Iraq at a time when few others in the West were willing to do so, going on to be a prominent campaigner against Iraqi sanctions that cost so many tens of thousands of lives. He will be sorely missed and our thoughts are with his loved ones at this time as they struggle with his loss.”
South Down MLA Caitríona Ruane, formerly spokesperson for the Bring Them Home campaign, said: “I first met Niall many years ago in Nicaragua and was struck not just by his passion to assist the spread of human rights in central and south America, but also his real love for the people of those countries.
“He gave the Bring Them Home campaign great support when there was little credit to be gained for it and visited Colombia a number of times with Deputy Crowe and I to report on the trial and the conditions the men were kept in. He went on to help us to take our case to the European Parliament. But as well as his political support and his invaluable assistance, I will remember him as a warm and engaging man whose company was always great fun and whose sense of humour lifted our spirits on many an occasion.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with his family at this time.”