Refractory Reiss relents as recalcitrant republican readies visa…

GERRY Adams will be allowed to raise funds from his appearance at a Friends of Sinn Fein function tomorrow. Previously, he had been banned from raising funds, and the US administration had refused to budge for some considerable time. Sinn Fein put the shift down to some successful lobbying, but the only thing the US special envoy Mitchell Reiss was interested in was SF movement on policing. If a highly stubborn Reiss has relented, there must be good reason.

  • Pete Baker

    In which case, Mitchell Reiss should read more closely what Sinn Féin has said publicly about that Agreement

    Not that the SF leadership would be passing along a different message in private.. beyond the earshot of the party membership…

  • Billy


    I am not a Sinn Fein supporter but your constant sniping at Sinn Fein and puerile insinuations are becoming tiresome, frankly.

    I believe that Sinn Fein should sign up and support policing.

    I may be incorrect but my understanding is that anything that the Sinn Fein leadership put forward will have to be supported by their membership at an Ard Fheis.

    Therefore, what would be the point of the Sinn Fein leadership putting forward a different viewpoint to the US in private than the one they put forward to their own membership in public?

    If their members don’t like it, they’ll reject it and the leadership would lose credibility.

  • Henry94

    The Sinn Fein leadership could get policing past an Ard Fheis tomorrow. But what they are doing is what they have always done with issues like this. They are building a consensus that includes the vast majority of the party.

    This is right and necessary to keep the dissidents where they belong, on the fringe.

  • J Kelly

    Henry I don’t believe that SF leadership could win a SF Ard Fheis without the outstanding issues being addressed, Transfer of Power, Time Frame for this to happen and Agreement of model and workings of the Policing and Justice Ministry. SF leadership have been very clear on this for years.

  • Mick Fealty

    If that’s the case JK, then surely we are looking at another no deal, (if both parties keep to their long stated bottom lines)? As things stand one, it seems to me, is incompatible with the other.

    Although as Pete hints, in this context the US position seems weirdly inconsistent with a line it has been pushing (consistently) since early 05.

  • Perhaps the Bush Administration,Mitchel Reiss in partiqular have an Artistic stake in allowing Sinn Fein to fundraise again?

    Lobbying from the FBI Art Crime Team, Special Agent Robert “Billboard Bob” Wittman in partiqular, may have resulted in a side deal that see’s the stolen Vermeer from Boston surface.

  • I have to agree with JK on this one Henry.

    On the strength of these proposals the leadership could not win an Ard Fheis. I don’t believe the leadership have any intention of calling an Ard Fheis on the strength of these proposals though.

    The Ard Chomhairle have made that clear this week.

    “The Ard Chomhairle notes the report on its consultation process and onrecent discussions between the party negotiation team and the two governments.This includes the concerns raised, the progress made and the work still ongoing.

    We believe that the process set out at St. Andrews has the potential to deliver the full implementation of the Good Friday Agreement and to bring about the restoration of the power-sharing and all-Ireland political institutions.

    However, there are elements in the document set out by the two governments,which require further work to keep them in line with the Good FridayAgreement.

    There are ongoing negotiations in relation to a number of core issues which have yet to be resolved.

    Subject to delivery of these issues the commitments set out in the governments’ St. Andrews statement could represent a way forward.

    The Ard Chomhairle mandates the party President and national Officer Board to pursue all of this and to report back to the Ard Chomhairle.

    We reiterate our view that the issue of policing and justice is a matter for the two governments and all the political parties. Issues to be agreed include a timeframe for the transfer of powers and a model for the department on policing and justice.

    Sinn Fein is committed to bring an end to decades of repressive and sectarian policing.We reject any role for MI5 in Ireland or in civic policing.

    We want to see democratically accountable civic policing and we will continue to work until we achieve this.”