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Sinn Féin MEP expresses concern regarding court delay on Irish language speakers case

27 October, 2006


Sinn Féin MEP Bairbre de Brún has today expressed her concerns regarding the length of time taken to rule on whether or not an Irish language speaker can obtain court services in Irish.

Máire Nic an Bhaird was arrested in Belfast earlier this year by the PSNI for speaking Irish. This Monday (October 30th) her case comes before the courts.

Speaking today Ms de Brún said:

"It is absolutely essential that this young woman should be able to have her dealings with the court through the medium of Irish, in keeping with the European Charter on Regional and Minority Languages, the Good Friday Agreement, and the Criminal Justice Review.

"I am concerned at the length of time taken to rule on whether or not she can obtain court services in her native language and this case seems to be dragging on for an unacceptable length of time.

"This case once again highlights the need for the introduction of an Irish Language Act in the Six Counties to ensure that the basic rights of Irish language speakers are protected and promoted." ENDS

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