IRA Easter statements

The following is the annual Easter statement issued by the Provisional IRA.

On this, the 91st anniversary of the 1916 Rising the leadership of Oglaigh na hEireann extends solidarity to the families of our patriot dead.

This year also marks the 50th Anniversary of the Border Campaign and we remember with pride those comrades and friends who gave their lives in that phase of our struggle.

We send solidarity greetings to our imprisoned comrades and their families.

We believe that the outstanding endorsement of the Sinn Féin position last month is further validation of the initiatives and decisions taken by us in recent times.

We believe that Irish republicanism is stronger, more united and more confident than at any time since partition and that we can achieve an end to the partition of our country and the establishment of a free and independent Ireland.

We firmly believe that our republican goal of a united Ireland is achievable through purely peaceful and democratic means. We remain fully committed to the establishment of the ideals and principles enshrined in the Proclamation of 1916.

The will of the people has been and is to see advances in the political process. The British and Irish governments and all of the political parties must ensure that this happens. We welcome the breakthrough on Monday 26 March and we commend all involved and we urge them to continue their efforts to advance the peace process.

Beirigi Bua.

The following is the annual Easter statement issued by the Continuity IRA.

On this the 91st anniversary of the 1916 Proclamation of the Irish Republic, the Leadership of the Republican Movement sends greetings to members, supporters and friends throughout the world. We send a special greeting to our imprisoned comrades in Portlaoise and Maghaberry, Co Antrim and applaud the continual prison protest in Maghaberry which has been ongoing since last June. On this note we would like to extend our appreciation to the Republican Prisoners Action Group who have organised and promoted the outside activity in support of the protesting prisoners. We would like to thank all groups and all people who supported these protests.

Over the course of this Easter weekend comrades and supporters of the Republican Movement will assemble at gravesides, memorials and monuments to fallen comrades from many generations who have given their lives for the cause of Irish National Liberation. This year many of us will assemble with a heavy heart following the further betrayal of the All-Ireland Republic by former comrades who have taken yet a another step in treachery with their recognition of the RUC/PSNI, and their further acceptance and administering of British Rule in the occupied six northern counties. True Republicans will have watched with horror the antics and political posturing of the Provisional Leadership over the last twelve months in their attempts to placate militant Paisleyism and their eagerness to hold a special Ard-Fheis to rush through a motion to support the armed wing of the British Oppressor. The true Republican Leadership will never compromise and will never accept British Rule in any part of our Country.

In recent weeks we have seen yet another election to a British controlled assembly in the occupied part of our country. We note the involvement of Republican Sinn Féin who fielded abstentionist candidates and we applaud all of those candidates, their agents and supporters who fought a superb political campaign against very difficult odds. We also congratulate all candidates who contested these elections on an abstentionist basis. Supporters should remember that the struggle for Irish National Liberation has never been measured by the number of votes which our movement have been afforded but by the commitment of the small numbers who have remained steadfast and loyal to the Irish Republic.

Our history has shown that the men and women of 1916 who proclaimed the Irish Republic were besmirched and indeed spat upon following the historic Proclamation. We should remember that political change can often take place very quickly and dramatically as was seen by the Election results just two years later in 1918.

Over the past twelve months our members and supporters were subjected to continued harassment, arrests and false imprisonment on both sides of the border. This is something that we have come to accept, and is a clear indication to everyone that nothing has changed, regardless of what many might think. True Republicans have always experienced such treatment but let our message be clear: we will not be intimidated or derailed from our continued resistance to British Occupation. We urge our members to be ever vigilant.

There have been further overtures to our Leadership from a number of British agents in various guises, including the Provisionals, to advance what they think will put into place the final piece of their sordid jigsaw for British Rule in Ireland. We say to all such on-comers that the Republican movement will not yield to any such agents. We are not for sale and we cannot be bought. This message should be understood by all our members, supporters and friends. There have also been continual attempts to besmirch the Republican Movement by associating them with drugs, criminality and to recent murders in Belfast. The Leadership of the Continuity Irish Republican Army has already categorically denied involvement in any of this activity and reiterates it once more in this statement.

Due to the treachery of others our struggle faces greater obstacles than before, but this leadership is aware that there has always been a significant body of opinion in Ireland opposed to British Rule. The task of the Republican movement in the immediate future is to organise, harness and lead that support in opposition to foreign rule and British Imperialism. For this purpose we re-dedicate ourselves this Easter day.

An Phoblacht Abú!

The following is the annual Easter statement issued by the 'Real' IRA.

The Leadership of Oglaigh na hEireann extend Easter greetings to our Volunteers and supporters and to all POW's currently incarcerated for remaining true to the vision of the men and women of 1916. We also extend solidarity and fraternal greetings to fellow revolutionaries the world over, mindful that the anti colonial and anti imperialist struggle is both national and international. Oglaigh na hEireann stand shoulder to shoulder with you in your struggles to rid your nations and peoples of military, political and economic occupation by foreign despots.

Oglaigh na hEireann remember with pride all those who have fallen in the national liberation struggle from all republican organisations, we send easter greetings to the families and friends of those who have made the ultimate sacrifice, especially in the most recent campaigns.

We commend our volunteers for the discipline they have shown during these difficult times for republicanism. Discipline is essential if republicanism is to prosper in the future. Republicanism cannot allow itself to be sullied by acts of criminality carried out by those purporting to act in its name, such acts not only bring ignominy on the perpetrators but the entire republican family. We must move forward with principle, clear vision and unity of purpose. We know what need to be done, we cannot allow ourselves to be sidetracked by counter revolutionary activities.

This Easter we commemorate the 91st anniversary of the Easter Rising when republicans from varying political backgrounds and outlooks united on the issues they agreed upon, the necessity of breaking the connection with England and the establishment of a sovereign Irish republic. Today republicanism has also many diverse strands however diversity is a strength, not a weakness, republican diversity and republican unity can co exist. Provided republicans can agree on the central issue, namely the restoration and defence of Irish National sovereignty then we can rebuild a stronger movement capable of challenging British rule in Ireland.

Republicanism must return to its progressive and democratic roots if it is to prevent itself being dragged down avenues created to destroy it.

We take this opportunity to pay tribute to all those who took the correct stance on the RUC/PSNI during the recent debate on that issue.

Once again we state our total and absolute rejection of this force as acceptable in Ireland. No British policing in Ireland can be countenanced by republicans. Ireland is illegally occupied by Britain thus rendering and British force or institution of power illegal,this is the republican position.

The total capitulation of a once revolutionary movement has shocked and saddened many but has come as no surprise to Oglaigh na hEireann. History is littered with examples of revolutionaries becoming absorbed into the state apparatus of the systems they once fought. The promise of changing the system from within has turned out to be an empty one for republicans. In these historic times history teaches us to be wary of such hollow rhetoric. Those who have in the past promised to change the system today preside over massive inequalities of wealth and opportunity and the wholesale rape and theft of our natural resources. Others who more recently promised to lead us to the republic have delivered British rule and at a terrible cost

Thankfully our history has also taught us that there will always be those willing to resist injustice and occupation by whatever means are at their disposal, including force of arms.

Likewise Oglaigh na hEireann, the Irish Republican Army, will continue to reserve the right to use armed force as and when we deem it necessary.

In Defence of the Nation. Beir Bua.

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