UVF get Dublin grant aid

26-County Taoiseach Bertie Ahern has sanctioned a hand-out of Irish taxpayers’ money to a Belfast community group under the control of one of most notorious units of the Ulster Volunteer Force.

The Taoiseach’s office has handed almost four thousand Euros to a community group in north Belfast associated with a UVF terror gang accused of colluding with RUC Special Branch and responsible for dozens of murders and attempted assassinations.

The grant is part of a programme by both governments to placate unionist paramilitaries and wean them from paramilitarism and criminality through hand-outs. The funds include building a war memorial dedicated to soldiers from both sides of the border who died in the two world wars.

The project will also remove a UVF mural depicting two masked gunmen and the slogan: ‘Prepared for war, ready for war.’

A spokesman at the Department of the Taoiseach in Dublin confirmed it was helping to fund the memorial: ‘The aim of the fund is to assist and encourage the development of local organisations. The Taoiseach approved a grant of O4,000 for a piece of artwork to commemorate the link between the 16th Irish and the 36th Ulster Divisions,’ the spokesman said.

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