With the IMC’s 11th report due out later today [*ahem* – Ed] other mood music is floating in the background. The Irish Times article, Mick noted here, ends on an interesting point, especially since Gerry Moriarty has second report in the paper[subs req] which begins with predicting the inclusion in the IMC report, ostensibly on security normalisation, of a positive update on their previous mostly positive assessment of the PIRA.. despite the caveats.The prediction on the IMC report in the Irish Times is
The Independent Monitoring Commission (IMC) will today confirm that the IRA is continuing to disavow paramilitarism and criminality as the Northern parties prepare for “hothouse” talks outside Ireland, most likely at St Andrews in Scotland.
While from the article noted earlier
Yet no matter how successful the Scottish talks, there will still be loose ends.
For example, it is virtually certain there will be no Sinn Féin agreement on policing by then.
Indeed… and as someone said in May, “It’s all about policing”
The mood music isn’t exclusive to the IMC, the Secretary of State for Wales and Northern Ireland, Peter Hain, has been at it as well, almost slipping under the radar yesterday were these comments at a press conference
Peter Hain urged Sinn Fein to join policing structures like the Policing Board and District Policing Partnerships to pave the way for devolved Government by November 24.
He was speaking at a press conference in Belfast marking the start of intense dialogue aimed at restoring the Northern Ireland Assembly and Executive.
“I think it is imperative that Sinn Fein co-operate with policing on a practical day-to-day basis,” he said.
“They have started to do that and I think there should be more of that.”
He added there should be no reason for policing to become an obstacle or hurdle to devolution.
“Progress by Sinn Fein will ease the way and will also boost confidence in the unionist community.”
That practical co-operation he refers to relates primarily to the details of this post.. but more interestingly his comments echo what he said in his speech at the MacGill summer school – a speech Sinn Féin’s Gerry Adams described as patronising republicans
In any event, policing remains the issue on which devloution may fall.. at least for now..