Monday, 31 October 2011

Family & Friends Maghaberry Camp

The Family & Friends support group for republican prisoners Maghaberry, are to hold a 24hour vigil/fast on the grounds of the prison on Friday 25th November until Saturday 26th November. 

The group are using this event to highlight the ongoing protest within Maghaberry by Republican prisoners and the deteriorating situation within Roe house. 

The two core issues (strip searching and controlled movement) which had been dealt with within the August 2010 agreement remain unresolved.

On Monday 24th October a report into Maghaberry by Dame Ann Owers, at the behest of Justice Minister David Ford, made numerous recommendations around all aspects of the prison but in particular she recommends "Full body-searching is a procedure which is intrusive and invades the privacy of all prisoners...if other less intrusive and more effective electronic methods become available they should be piloted and their use considered." 

We the family and friends group believe that such technology exists and in fact is in use daily in Maghaberry within the dedicated search facility outside Roe house. This available technology makes strip searches obsolete and we call for an end to the current practice of forced strip searches upon leaving and
entering Maghaberry.

The failure to both implement the original agreement and to deal constructively with the issue of strip searching and controlled movement within the republican landings is clear evidence that the attempted criminalisation policy of republican prisoners adopted in the 70's and 80's is very much at work today. 

We urge David Ford to act immediately. This recommendation on full body-searching (strip-searches) gives David Ford a way out of the fixed position he has stated in response to the prisoners on protest.

The Family & Friends support group intend this vigil/fast to be peaceful and dignified and we don't intend to infringe upon any of the family visits that are scheduled on these dates. We call on all republicans to attend the camp and show support for the republican prisoners on protest in Maghaberry.

Martin Rafferty, PRO
Family & Friends support group for republican prisoners Maghaberry.

Saturday, 29 October 2011

Maghaberry POW Convoy Newry-Dublin

Posted Image

We are appealing to all organisations/independents to participate in this convoy from Newry to British Embassy in Dublin to demand the full implementation of the 2010 agreement.

All are asked to decorate their vehicles with flags, posters, etc relevant to the convoy theme, "IMPLEMENT THE 2010 AGREEMENT IN FULL". Let the message be loud and clear that we are not going to stand idly by and allow republican prisoners be criminalised.

The convoy will start in Newry and willl pass through Dundalk, Drogheda, Julianstown, Balbriggan, George's Quay, Trinity College and out to British Embassy at Ballsbridge. A one hour protest will take place outside the embassy.

Please forward the word and encourage as many as possible to participate

Thursday, 27 October 2011

First Court Appearance for Newry éirígí Activist

Yesterday [October 26] saw the first court appearance of éirígí’s Newry spokesperson Stephen Murney.
éirígí members and supporters held a protest outside the British courthouse in Newry in solidarity with Stephen and other victims of PSNI harassment.

Protest at Newry Courthouse

The protest was met with much support from passing motorists, many of whom sounded their horns in support. The political police also had the peaceful protest and those taking part in it under constant surveillance.

Stephen was arrested and beaten by the PSNI last month during a “security operation” in the Derrybeg estate in which homes were raided, cars searched and residents tormented.

Despite being punched and kicked by PSNI gunmen in front of his family and neighbours he now finds himself facing nine charges.

Rúnaí ginearálta éirígí Breandán Mac Cionnaith said, “The only thing Stephen is guilty of is standing up for his community. The Derrybeg estate was held under siege that day just as it has been countless times over the years. Stephen’s case is not an isolated incident, éirígí are aware of numerous examples of other republicans finding themselves in similar circumstances over the past few months. This is nothing but a relentless campaign of harassment being carried out against republicans in Newry.

“Countless times Stephen has put himself forward and has exposed and highlighted PSNI harassment in Newry and the unchanged ways of this force. Sadly that means that over the past number of years he has become a target for special attention which has culminated in his assault and arrest.

Mac Cionnaith continued, “éirígí in Newry are involved in countless campaigns in the Newry area. Our members are active in engaging with their communities in many shapes and forms, their Different Name, Same Aim campaign has been ongoing since early 2010 and they are also involved in the Stormont Isn’t Working campaign which exposes the inability of the puppet body to solve the economic crisis. As well as those campaigns our Newry activists have also been busy organising pickets, protests and commemorative events throughout the year as well as standing on picket lines with striking workers.

“It’s clear the PSNI and their cheerleaders are deeply worried about the rise of éirígí in Newry and the fact that we are offering an alternative to working class communities in the area. This is the reason our activists are being targeted in such a manner by the crown forces.”

Breandán concluded, “If the PSNI think that dragging republicans before British courts is somehow going to deter éirígí from rebuilding a popular struggle of resistance, not only in Newry but across the country, then they are very much mistaken.”

Stephen’s court case was adjourned until November 23.

Sunday, 23 October 2011

Newry POW Campaign Continues

Newry Republicans have continued with their campaign to support the POWs in Maghaberry. Even more signs have been erected across Newry recently to highlight the plight of republican prisoners. 

There is hardly a street in the centre of Newry which doesn't have a sign highlighting the situation in Maghaberry.

The "Free Colin Duffy" sign in the Derrybeg estate has also been tidied and touched up


Thursday, 20 October 2011

Public Meetings......Not Open to the Public???

Interesting news item this morning regarding a British DPP meeting in Derry.

A protest was organised by local people opposed to British policing. Yet when they arrived for the PUBLIC DPP meeting they found themselves locked out of it.

They were told that there was "no room"

Now that could either be lies or else it means that anti-republicans through fear of being embarrassed put a call out for their people to flock to the meeting to take up all the seats. Thus ensuring the peaceful protesters would then be prevented by armed gunmen (PSNI) from entering the venue.

Now i would find it very hard to believe that these meetings are normally packed to capacity. I have posted a few times regarding the farcical goings on at some of these meetings. Here in Newry for example there were more PSNI members at one particular DPP meeting than members of the general public. At another in a different area only one person turned up and that the local priest.

I also recall a DPP meeting in Derry last year where former Republicans called for stop and search powers to be merely "suspended".

The motion was carried after a private vote in which Provisional Sinn Fein were in favour, the SDLP abstained, Unionists opposed and independents were split.

The RUC/PSNI have so far ignored this motion from the body that is supposedly there to hold them to account, so what does that tell us?

We are often told that these type of meetings give the public an opportunity to scrutinise and hold the PSNI to account by putting questions etc to the PSNI, yet in South Down a senior PSNI member refused to answer questions asked by a constitutional nationalist at the meeting.

It’s obvious that this locally recruited militia remains unchanged and also proves that bodies such as the DPP are useless, toothless talk shops, and the PSNI cheerleaders who participate in them are powerless to do anything about it.

But preventing citizens from peacefully protesting is the lowest of the low. It's a basic human right to protest against something you disagree with, particularly when it's protesting against human rights and child abusers in the British forces.

Why would those who participate in DPP meetings prevent members of the public from protesting against human rights abusers and child abusers?

Annual Seamus Costello Commemoration

Wednesday, 19 October 2011

éirígí Remember Volunteer Michael Hughes in Newry

éirígí in Newry held a wreath-laying event in the Derrybeg estate yesterday [October 18] in memory of IRA volunteer Michael Hughes, who was killed by the British army’s Royal Marine Commandos thirty-seven years ago in October 1974.

The ceremony was attended by local éirígí members, supporters and community leaders from the area, including independent republican councillor Davy Hyland, and a wreath was laid by Derrybeg community activist Anthony Coyle.

Speaking after the event, éirígí’s Stephen Murney said, “Michael was just 16 years old when he was killed by the British army. Despite his young age he stepped up to the mark and joined Óglaigh na hÉireann. The people of Derrybeg have suffered gravely due to the British occupation with five IRA volunteers from this estate giving their lives over the years.

“While we remember Michael, we must not forget that the British forces who killed him are still occupying Ireland, with thousands of British combat troops garrisoned here today including sinister covert forces like the SRR who are well skilled in the practices of murder and collusion. In 2005, an SRR gang was caught red-handed by Iraqi police in Basra carrying a bomb in what appeared to be a classic covert British dirty tricks operation.

“The fact that the SRR is a companion regiment to the notorious SAS will not be lost upon the Irish people. Nor will the fact that the SRR was at least partially-formed from the discredited 14th Intelligence Company which was itself one of the lead British Army units responsible for controlling the unionist death squads.”

Stephen continued, “We constantly see attempts to normalise the occupying British forces with regular ‘homecoming’ events and recruitment stalls taking place. éirígí have continually resisted these and during one event éirígí members boarded a Royal Marine warship, the same regiment that murdered Michael Hughes, and protested against the event.

“éirígí has consistently opposed the British occupation from the party’s formation and we will continue to do so while at the same time remembering the sacrifice made by republicans like Michael Hughes.”

Tuesday, 18 October 2011

A Sign of the Times

éirígí in Newry have upped their Different Name, Same Aim campaign in the area in direct response to an upsurge in Crown Force brutality and harassment in recent weeks. A new addition to this campaign will include the erection of a number of signs in working class areas across the district.

éirígí’s Newry representative Stephen Murney explained, “We have started to erect a number of signs in the Newry area to highlight the unchanged nature of this force. The first signs were erected in the Derrybeg estate in direct response to the recent attack on the community by the PSNI in which homes were raided, residents tormented and I was assaulted and arrested.

“I have been a community activist in the Derrybeg estate for several years and from engaging with people from this estate on a daily basis it’s clear that they haven’t been fooled by the lick of paint approach, nor are they happy with the ham-fisted tactics the British police use when they have the Derrybeg community in their sights.

“Whilst some amongst us would rather remain silent and engage in selective condemnation when it suits their agenda, we in éirígí pledge to oppose and resist all forms of PSNI harassment and stand by all victims of human rights abuses.”

Murney added, “In the coming days and weeks more of these signs will also be erected in other working class areas of Newry to spread the message that, despite what Crown Force cheerleaders say, the only obvious change in this force is the name of it. We also have several other initiatives in the pipeline for this campaign.

“éirígí will not be found wanting when it comes to resisting and opposing the political police.”

Sunday, 16 October 2011

Latest éirígí stickers hit the streets

Tá an beart is déanaí de ghreamaitheoirí éirígí ag bualadh sráideanna, cuaillí lampa agus pé dreach eile atá ar fáil le cúpla lá anuas. Tagraíonn na greamaitheoirí daite agus deartha go cliste do réimse leathan cheisteanna, mar shampla an tríochadú bliain ó chinn stailc ocrais 1981, cáin tí na Sé Chondae Fichead agus cearta cimí polaitiúla. Is féidir na dearaí go léir a íoslódáil i leagan PDF thíos.

The latest batch of éirígí stickers hit the streets, lampposts and other available surfaces of Ireland in recent days. The colourful and cleverly-designed stickers address a wide range of issues including the thirtieth anniversary of the 1981 hunger strike, the Twenty-Six County home tax and the rights of political prisoners. All of the designs can be downloaded in PDF format below.

Break the Connection with Capitalism sticker
Stop Torture in Maghaberry sticker
Hunger Strike anniversary sticker
Tír Gan Teanga sticker
Political Status sticker
Boycott the Home Tax sticker
Nationalise Corrb Gas sticker
Boycott the Home Tax sticker

Stop Shell in Mayo sticker