Adams in Castlereagh talks
Adams in Castlereagh talks

Sinn Féin President Gerry Adams has held a first meeting with the PSNI chief since his party made its historic decision to support British policing in the North.

He led a delegation to PSNI headquarters at Castlereagh for 90 minutes of round-table talks with Hugh Orde which he described as “an upfront discussion on a range of issues”.

“We think this is a very important first step in a whole process of delivering a new relationship between our community and the police,” Mr Adams said.

“We as a leadership are satisfied that in terms of community policing that a new relationship can be produced in dealing with all of the crimes which beset the community - muggings, violence in the home, drug abuse and drug pushing, death riders, hate crimes and all aspects of such criminality.

“We went through all of that in some great detail.”

Mr Adams said the more involved issues they had discussed had centred on Police Ombudsman Nuala O’Loan’s recent report on PSNI collusion in a sectarian paramilitary murder campaign.

Mrs O’Loan said in her report last month that there had been collusion between the PSNI and loyalist paramilitaries in some 15 murders up to three years ago.

Mr Adams said they had also raised the issue of the overwhelmingly Protestant force preventing the inquests into the deaths of some republicans decades ago.

He said yesterday was the 15th anniversary of the killing of four IRA men in County Tyrone and so far their families had been denied the right to an inquest.

“We dealt with these issues in some detail and I see today’s meeting as one in the start of a process of engagements so we all get policing right,” he said.

He would not be drawn on whether Hugh Orde was a person he thought he could do business with.

However, he made the point that Orde had not been a member of the ‘old RUC’.

“He has not been part of what passed for policing for a very long time,” Mr Adams said.


* The relatives of four people murdered after PSNI/RUC police collusion with unionist paramilitaries in the North are suing Hugh Orde.

The families’ legal team issued a writ to the PSNI chief in Belfast yesterday.

A report last month by Police Ombudsman Nuala O’Loan found officers from the PSNI/RUC Special Branch had protected their agent, Mark Haddock, from prosecution for his part in 16 murders in north Belfast between 1991 and 2003.

The families of Sharon McKenna, Peter McTasney, Gerard Brady and John Harbinson are taking the action.

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