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Sinn Féin to meet Hugh Orde in Belfast on Wednesday

12 December, 2006

Sinn Féin President Gerry Adams has this evening said that a party delegation will meet the PSNI Chief Constable Hugh Orde tomorrow morning. Mr. Adams set out the party's position on policing several weeks ago. At that time he said the party intended intensifying its contacts with the British government and was prepared to meet with the PSNI Chief Constable on issues which fall within his remit. Among the issues which the party plans to raise with Mr. Orde are: MI5, political policing, collusion, inquiries, plastic bullets, and the closure of barracks.

The Sinn Féin delegation will include: Sinn Féin President Gerry Adams MP; Michelle Gildernew MP; Caitriona Ruane MLA and Gerry Kelly MLA.

Mr. Adams said:

"On November 20th in an article in An Phoblacht I set out Sinn Féin's position in respect of policing and those matters which remain to be resolved. Sinn Féin is for policing, and a fair and effective legal and judicial system which is transparent and accountable. We intend to achieve a civic policing system which is accountable to citizens and representative of the community as a whole.

In recent weeks I have met with scores of families of victims of state violence. They are demanding and have the right to truth.

These are highly important issues.

Very few nationalists or republicans trust the agencies of the northern state. The PSNI will have to do a lot to earn the confidence of most nationalists. Among the issues that need resolved are: a definitive date for the transfer of power, the departmental model into which power will be transferred and the role of MI5.

I am prepared to call a meeting of the Sinn Féin Ard Chomhairle immediately agreement has been reached on these issues and for the purpose of convening a special Ard Fheis within the timeframe set out at St. Andrews. However, I will not go to the Ard Chomhairle to seek a special Ard Fheis unless I have the basis to do so.

In order to advance these matters we have intensified our contact with the British government. Some progress has been made but there is still work to be concluded.

I also said that we are prepared to meet with the PSNI Chief Constable Hugh Orde on issues which fall within his remit. And that is what we are doing tomorrow morning. Among the issues we will discuss with him are:

MI5 - MI5 orchestrated a policy of collusion and state murder for three decades. They can have no role in civic policing;

Political policing and the need for clear proof that this has ended or will end;

An end to plastic bullets;

Sinn Féin is commited to Law and Order and proper and effective policing. Consequently, we are determined to ensure that the police service operates under the highest standards and is held to account through the most rigorous and efficient accountable and transparent mechanisms; and


Sinn Féin is also concerned about the continued presence of human rights abusers within the PSNI, and the efforts by the PSNI to frustrate inquiries into collusion between state agencies and unionist deaths squads

The fact is that nationalist experience has been one of partisan political policing which routinely engaged in harassment, torture, assassination, shoot-to-kill, plastic bullet murders and maimings and collusion with death squads.

That is why the Good Friday Agreement required 'a new beginning to policing' as an essential element of the peace process.

That is why Sinn Féin is determined to get policing right."ENDS

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