The republican armed group known as Oglaigh na hEireann has denied reports that it is involved in talks with the British or 26 County governments or that it is on the verge of disbanding.
In a statement issued last night, the organisation has said it is involved in a “wide-ranging discussion” but that it will not contemplate “disbandment or disarming” as part of the process.
The last significant attack carried out by the group was in January when a roadside bomb was left for PSNI patrol in Twinbrook, on the outskirts of west Belfast, was defused by the British army.
Oglaigh na hEireann emerged from a split with another breakaway IRA group, the Real IRA, in 2009. It has been responsible for a series of actions targeting the British Army and PSNI, but without incurring fatalities. Three of its volunteers are currently imprisoned, two in Maghaberry and one in Portlaoise.
In the statement, the organisation said: “Over the past number of months Oglaigh na hEireann has conducted a wide-ranging discussion about tactics, strategy and the future of the republican struggle.
“In order to clarify some rumours and falsifications this does not connote an immediate ceasefire.
“It certainly doesn’t translate to disbandment or disarming - Oglaigh na hEireann will not contemplate these options.”
It added: “Oglaigh na hEireann would like to make or clear that our current leadership has not held any discussions, bi-lateral or otherwise, with the British government.
“A back channel with any government does not exist and we never attempted to explore this option, despite some media assertions.
“Our rethinking process will continue, unhindered by external elements attempting to dictate the pace and impede on our future decisions.”
The statement was issued following rumours of a transition within the Republican Network for Unity, which has previously voiced support for the armed group. Those reports followed a commemoration in Ardoyne, where senior RNU member and former republican prisoner Gary McNally said that “a strategic rethink is required from the individual republican activist and organised republicanism”.