Republican News · Thursday 11 May 2000

[An Phoblacht]

Ard Chomhairle says Patten must be implemented in full

Meeting in Dublin on Tuesday, 9 May, the Sinn Féin Ard Chomhairle welcomed last weekend's statements by the two governments and the IRA but said that there is ``considerable unease'' among republicans about attempts to dilute the Patten proposals on policing.

Sinn Féin Vice-President and Assembly member for West Tyrone, Pat Doherty, said: ``Any tampering with Patten is a recipe for disaster. Sinn Féin will oppose, tooth and nail, any attempt to dilute Patten. The Patten proposals on policing must be implemented in full.'' He added:

``There was considerable unease voiced at the Ard Chomhairle about the issue of the RUC and Patten being used to block progress at a time when there is a very positive and upbeat mood among people about the peace process.

``As far Sinn Féin and republicans are concerned, Patten does not go far enough in the first place. We need to establish a non-partisan, non-political police service that nationalists and republicans can recommend young nationalists to join and that will serve the entire community.''

He added that Sinn Féin expects ``early and comprehensive'' developments in the areas of the governments' weekend pledges on equality, human rights, supporting the families of all the victims of the conflict, demilitarisation, the Irish language and a new police service and justice.

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