Bertie makes his pitch?

Recent comments from Taioseach Bertie Ahern seem designed to suggest that he might be prepared to consider a ‘solution’ to the current impasse over photographs and an end to IRA criminality. Over the weekend he demanded a definitive statement from the IRA on an end to that criminality. Today he is shifting the Irish Governement stance on photographic evidence when compared to last week’s published proposals.The problem for Bertie is that such a ‘solution’ – no photos but a definitive statement on ending criminality – now requires a reversal, from their stated positions, by the DUP and Sinn Féin.

Gerry Adams has already issued his customary rapid response

Sinn Féin President Mr Gerry Adams has said committments given by the IRA on ending its activities should be enough for the Taoiseach, Mr Ahern.

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“You cannot be a criminal and a Republican activist. You cannot be involved in any criminality and involved in republican activism,” Mr Adams said.[my emphasis]

Hmm.. and robbing post offices falls into which category, Gerry?

Of course, the DUP has not made any change to its previously stated position either.

Bertie may just be whistling in the wind with this one.. not that SF and the DUP will mind.. as the BBC’s Mark Devenport noted previously, they’re all too aware that all publicity is good publicity.

One additional point though, does Sinn Féin TD Aengus Ó Snodaigh calling the Taoiseach “a liar” not count as ‘intemperate’ language?

Update – It seems that RTE asked the Sinn Féin president the question I posed earlier, after his comment – “You cannot be a criminal and a Republican activist. You cannot be involved in any criminality and involved in republican activism,” Mr Adams said.[my emphasis]. – namely which category robbing post offices fell into.

Asked where that[the above comment] left the killers of Garda Jerry McCabe, Mr Adams said that that should not be the current focus.[my emphasis]

No, Gerry, you probably think that shouldn’t be the focus.. after all, it does make your comment seem more than a little hypocritical, doesn’t it?

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