The 32 County Sovereignty Movement have urged republicans to be vigilant following the arrest and subsequent approach by British forces to one of its members from South Armagh.
On the evening of Sunday 9th January, a member of the 32CSM Ard Chomhairle [leadership] was driving in Forkhill when he was pursued, stopped and detained by a PSNI landrover and marked car. The PSNI members informed him that this was a routine stop and proceeded to check his car.
He was informed that his headlight was ‘dim’, and that the wall of his tyre was unsuitable for the cold conditions. He was then asked for identity papers before being taken to Banbridge PSNI base.
The 32CSM member, who is originally from the 26 counties, was asked on arrival at the barracks if he wanted them to contact the Irish embassy in London to inform them he was in custody in the United Kingdom.
The man was held for 3 hours before being released on five hundred pounds bail.
When leaving, he was approached by two men who asked him to “go for a drink and have a chat with them”. The republican recognised them as two men who had made an earlier approach to him under the guise of offering work, and then cash for information.
Again rejecting their approach, the republican went to retrieve his car from outside the station, where he found it had been torn apart. He was then given a docket stating that the car was searched because he ‘associated with suspected dissidents’.
The 32 County Sovereignty Movement “utterly” condemned the arrest which they said was “clearly engineered at the behest of RUC special branch in order to facilitate an approach by them in conjunction with MI5.
“The movement urge anyone who is subjected to such an approach to make contact with their solicitor immediately and we again call on republicans to be vigilant and aware of the wide variety and methods used by the MI5 led British security apparatus currently operating in Ireland.”
MARTIN COREY MARCH
Meanwhile, republicans in West Belfast have been urged to attend a special march calling for the release of Lurgan republican Martin Corey.
Mr Corey, who served 20 years in Long Kesh, had his licence revoked by the British Secretary last April as he was deemed “security risk”. However his supporters say Mr Corey was deliberately targeted for his political beliefs.
The march will begin at Kilwilkee in Lurgan at 2pm on Sunday, January 23. Speakers will address marchers at the end of the walk on the progress of the ongoing campaign to release Mr Corey.
“It’s important that all ex-republican prisoners from West Belfast come along to this march and show their solidarity with Martin as what happened to him could easily happen to them,” said Geraldine Taylor of Republican Sinn Fein.
“He served his time and is not part of any group, he’s been imprisoned for having a dissenting voice.”