Irish Republican News · September 26, 2015
[Irish Republican News]

[Irish Republican News]
British Labour leader backs Irish self-determination


Jeremy Corbyn has reiterated his support for a united Ireland amid an ongoing hysterical reaction in Britain to the election of the socialist as leader of the Labour Party there.

Asked whether he still supported Irish unification during an interview with the New Statesman current magazine, Mr Corbyn answered, “it’s an aspiration that I have always gone along with”.

Mr Corbyn (pictured, right) has long been in favour of a united Ireland. He arranged a meeting with Gerry Adams in London in 1984 and in 1996 was accused of “traitorous” behaviour by unionists for helping Mr Adams take part in an event in the British Houses of Parliament.

In 1985 he opposed the Anglo Irish Agreement, saying “the agreement strengthens rather than weakens the border between the 6 and the 26 counties, and those of us who wish to see a united Ireland oppose the agreement for that reason”.

Democratic Unionist MP Jeffrey Donaldson said: “Nothing Jeremy Corbyn says about Northern Ireland is going to be helpful or is designed to be helpful.

He said the Labour Party must clarify its position on the ‘principle of consent’ in the 1998 Good Friday Agreement.

Under the terms of that agreement, a united Ireland can only be brought about with the support of a majority of people within ‘Northern Ireland’. The Six-County state was cleaved from Ireland in 1921 and retained as a predominately Protestant and unionist region of the United Kingdom,. That sectarian dominance continues to this day, although to a lesser degree.

The Ulster Unionist Party said it had been assured that Labour was still committed to the ‘principle of consent’ after meeting Labour’s spokesperson on Ireland, Vernon Coaker, earlier this week.

“What we have here is a party leader who is out of step with his own party’s position,” he declared.

But Sinn Fein welcomed Mr Corbyn’s comments. A spokesman said: “Jeremy Corbyn has been a long-time friend of Ireland and of the peace process.”


The British establishment has been panicked by the veteran left-winger’s overwhelming victory in the Labour leadership contest.

His opposition to the renewal of the Trident nuclear missile programme raised alarm bells for British securocrats, as well as his reported intention to end British involvement in the wars in the Middle East.

Earlier this month, the mainstream British media seized on his failure to mouth the words of ‘God Save the Queen’ anthem and portrayed him as ‘unpatriotic’ amid a slew of smear stories.

Among the reports were paranoid warnings that the new Labour leader wants to stop British people from eating meat.

The controversy over his vegetarianism ironically clashed with allegations that his opposite number, British Prime Minister David Cameron, sexually abused a dead animal as a student.

A biography by former Conservative Party treasurer Lord Ashcroft claimed Cameron participated in a bizarre university initiation ritual which involved placing his penis inside the mouth of a dead pig. Cameron has not responded directly to the allegations.


Meanwhile, Mr Corbyn’s Shadow chancellor, John McDonnell (pictured, left), has apologised for comments made in praise of the IRA twelve years ago, but suggested they were to support peace.

The row centres on McDonnell’s remarks in 2003 that the sacrifice of the IRA had brought Britain to the negotiating table. He said: “It’s about time we started honouring those people involved in the armed struggle. It was the bombs and bullets and sacrifice made by the likes of (hunger striker) Bobby Sands that brought Britain to the negotiating table.

“The peace we have now is due to the action of the IRA.”

Challenged about the comments on BBC, McDonnell said: “I accept it was a mistake to use those words, but actually if it contributed towards saving one life, or preventing someone else being maimed, it was worth doing because we did hold on to the peace process.

“There was a real risk of the republican movement splitting, and some continuing with the armed process. If I gave offence, and I clearly have, from the bottom of my heart I apologise.”

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