The following is Sinn Féin’s case against the Independent
Monitoring Commission (sanctions body) according to a statement
from the party today.
The IMC is not part of the Agreement
It relies on reports from securocrats and security
services/PSNI, hence is not independent, a smokescreen for
political intervention on basis of securocrat agenda.
Its membership includes - John Alderdice, a political
opponent of SF for the past 30 years, John Grieve, former head
of the Metropolitan Police and officer in charge of the
operation in which unarmed IRA volunteer Diarmuid O,Neill who,
while trying to surrender, was shot dead by police, and Joe
Brosnan, former Secretary General of the Department of Justice
in Dublin, and Richard Kerr, former Deputy Director of the CIA
The IMC recommends sanctions against Sinn Féin, yet
offers not even one allegation that Sinn Féin is in any way in
breach of the Agreement, nor does it suggest Sinn Féin are.
The IMC recognises that Sinn Féin is not the IRA, that SF
is not in a position to determine what the IRA may do, that Sinn
Féin has used its influence well.
The IMC report is clearly absurd and contradictory and
its conclusions are politically driven.
Sinn Féin is not in breach of the Agreement. In fact we
have used our influence to good effect throughout this process.
And of course Sinn Féin will not be held responsible for
any words or deeds other than our own.
The irony is that the most glaring breach of the
Agreement and one which is continuing is the suspension of the
political institutions by the British Government.
Continuing suspension allows unionists who otherwise
would be exposed as refusing to take part in the institutions
off the hook.
The IMC’s report disgracefully reduces the ongoing
unionist paramilitary campaign of bombing and murder to a
postscript with reference to murders by loyalists such as the
killing of James McMahon or Andrew Cully lumped together in a
single sentence. And, of course the report exonerated the two
It is noticeable that the report failed to mention the
DUP,s links with Ulster Resistance or to draw attention to the
fact that the bulk of the guns imported by British Agent Brian
Nelson remain in the hands of unionist paramilitaries.
Nor does the report draw attention to the UUP membership
of the Loyalist Commission, at a time when the unionist
paramilitary organisations on this Commission were carrying out
murders and other attacks on Catholics and nationalists, that
the UUP remain on the Commission, or that the UUP is linked to
the Orange Order who annually visit violence on sections of the
Catholic community during their marching season.
Sinn Féin is happy to engage in a debate on who is in
breach of the Agreement, in fact we have asked for this in the
The Good Friday Agreement deals with the issue of
sanctions, and that we fully support. The so-called sanctions
mechanism and the powers accrued to the British Secretary of
State as a result of the legislation which accompanied the
establishment of the IMC are a breach of the Agreement ^ in fact
they contravene the safeguards built into the Agreement and its
provisions for democratic accountability.
This financial penalty will undermine the capacity of
Sinn Féin to fulfil their duties as MLAs
We demand for our electorate the same democratic rights,
entitlements and treatment as all other sections of the
The Sinn Féin mandate must therefore be respected.