“If others have not been consistent, that is a matter for them..”

A couple of interesting points arise from today’s Irish News report on the comments by Northern Ireland Regional Development minister, Sinn Féin’s Conor Murphy, on Radio Ulster yesterday – as noted here. The first comes via a footnote to the report

n An article in yesterday’s Irish News incorrectly suggested that Sinn Fein councillor Colman Burns had spoken to Mr Quinn’s family.

Well if it was incorrect to suggest that, then we should go to the apparent source of the suggestion confusion, Sinn Féin councillor Colman Burns

“The information supplied to the family by the PSNI identified no specific organisation as to the source of the threat. The family told me that no purpose would be served by publicity of any kind in relation to this threat. We agreed to abide by their wishes.”

More below the fold. Adds As Rapunsel has pointed out in the comment zone, Cllr Burns is actually referring to the family of the man who received this latest threat. Updated belowAnother point is the comments of Sinn Féin’s Conor Murphy on consistency

Speaking on Radio Ulster yesterday, Mr Murphy, pictured, said he stood over the allegation that Mr Quinn’s death had been linked to criminality.

“I can say that I made my analysis on what happened here honestly on the information which was available to me at the time – I have been consistent in that analysis,” he said.

“If others have not been consistent, that is a matter for them.

“I can stand over my analysis at the time and I still believe that to be the case.”

Mr Murphy said Mr Quinn had never been charged with any crime but added: “We made an assessment of what the young man was involved with.

“We made a very honest assessment at the time. We are consistent in that assessment.

“I have heard nothing to make me change my mind.”

Except that, at a time when Sinn Féin were asking the family “to re-consider their position and meet with [Sinn Féin] party leader Gerry Adams”, another Sinn Féin councillor, Terry Hearty, issued a statement in which he claimed that Gerry Adams had written to the family “almost two months ago” and that in the letter

He [Adams] also assured the Quinn family that he had at no time said anything that should be construed as labelling Paul Quinn a criminal.

That statement no longer appears to be available on the Sinn Féin website.. Adds But, in the comment zone, Ian points to the letter being quoted in this report

However, [in the letter] Adams continued: “I note from some press reports that Paul’s father is reported as accusing me of ‘blackening’ your son’s name with allegations of criminality. I wish to assure you that at no point have I said anything which should be misconstrued in this way.”

Although, as I noted at the time, Sinn Fein leader Gerry Adams’ statement from the 22 October, less than 48 hours after Paul Quinn was killed is, however, still there.

[Gerry Adams on 22 October] “I do not believe that there was any republican involvement in this murder.

“This murder is in our view linked to fuel smuggling involving criminals.”

Once again then, “It’s far better people tell the truth on the thing..”

Of course, that requires some clarity of vision..

And, as has been mentioned in connection to another recent event – “Justice is the glue that holds society together.”

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  • Has the PSNI been ‘inconsistent’?

    24/01/07

    PROVO DEATH THREAT TO YOUNG CULLYHANNA MAN

    The Quinn Support Group has learned that a young man from Cullyhanna has recently been officially notified by the PSNI that there is a threat to his life from the Provisional IRA. We are unable to supply any further details at present.

  • Insider

    Or has the The Quinn Support Group been inconsistent.

  • harry

    so conor murphy still believes that quinn was a criminal?

    that was his assessment? who did that assessing for Conor? the PSNI perhaps?, sinn fein people on the ground? the cullyhanna IRA?

    so the MP and minister has a source of intelligence on his constituents that can label them criminal or not criminal.

    has this assessment that quinn was criminal being tried in a court?

    if not, is fair to say then if quinn had not been tried in a court, he was in fact, innocent?

    sinn fein do like bending peoples ears with the evils of internment. that too was based on an “assessment” made by stormont minsiter.

    conor has adapted well.

  • Red Diesel

    Never mind what Connolly House is pumping out in the name of Colman Burns, the man himself was a little more honest on the UTV news at six last night, when he admitted that the PSNI communication specified that the threat to the witness came from ‘republican elements’. No doubt we will get more ‘solid assurances’ that no republicans were involved

  • spiritof07

    Conor Murphy comes out of all this very badly, as does the entire provo movement. There wasn’t this inconsistency in the old days………

  • Ian

    “This murder is in our view linked to fuel smuggling involving criminals.”

    The above statement by Adams has been taken as an inference that Quinn himself was involved in the fuel smuggling. That in itself is an inference.

    Obviously, criminals were involved in the Quinn murder by definition, as murder is a criminal act. But Adams’ statement above (I leave aside Murphy’s assorted statements) does not [i]necessarily[/i] lay accusations of criminal activity on Quinn himself.

    One alternative scenario would be if Quinn was inadvertently a witness to illegal fuel smuggling activity in which he was not involved, and those carrying out the fuel smuggling killed him in order to silence him.

    I thought that was what Adams was clumsily trying to clarify, although he only ended up digging himself deeper into a hole.

  • Ian
  • Red Diesel

    Ian, you are really struggling here. It is not only unreasonable, it is only sensible that the Quinn family has interpreted what party leader Adams said in the light of what his local party colleague Conor Murphy said. Gerry said it was a smuggling dispute and it involved criminals, and Conor said Paul Quinn was one of them. Sinn Fein has to take corporate responsibility for what its local spokesman said, or refute him.
    Your alternative scenario won’t get off the ground, never mind fly. It was no execution, no rubbing out of a potential witness. These guys battered Paul for a half an hour, taking turns and rest breaks. This was community control in action. What I find utterly incredible is that Conor Murphy persists in the criminality allegation against the lad. Not only is it untrue, I can’t see what purpose it serves since no one believes it. His local Sinn Fein colleagues have been completely silent on this side of the case. it is doing him real and sustained political damage. It is being interpreted, not as proof that Paul was involved in some criminal feud, but as justification for the Provos killing him. He got a golden opportunity on Radio Ulster (and an even better one on Radio Foyle, where his rants went unchallenged) to back off a bit without loss of face, and he declined it. You would nearly think someone had a gun to his head. Come to think of it….

  • jake

    red diesel
    the reason why conor murphy and other sinn feiners lie is not to persuade locals who will always know better but to soft soap the media which has generally been pro-peace process, therefore pro the adams leadership and unwilling to say or report anything that causes either any problems – as an example read gerry moriarty’s piece on the anniversary of the robert mccartney killing in yesterday’s irish times – if you didn’t know better you’d get the impression that adams and sinn fein has been as helpful to the mccartney sisters as it is possible to be as opposed to being deeply involved in a cover up – without sugary words from adams et al the media would not be able to fudge stories in the way that they do!

  • Rapunsel

    n An article in yesterday’s Irish News incorrectly suggested that Sinn Fein councillor Colman Burns had spoken to Mr Quinn’s family.

    Well if it was incorrect to suggest that, then we should go to the apparent source of the suggestion, Sinn Féin councillor Colman Burns

    “The information supplied to the family by the PSNI identified no specific organisation as to the source of the threat. The family told me that no purpose would be served by publicity of any kind in relation to this threat. We agreed to abide by their wishes.”

    Pete, one of us is confused. Mr Burns didn’t state that he had spoken to the Quinn family but to the family of the friend of Paul Quinn who was a witness to the murder.

    I was depressed by what Conor Murphy said as reported in today’s Irish news and feel it a grotesque example of the abuse of power by an individual and a continued besmuirchment of Paul Quinn and his family

  • Doubter

    I am do not understand why RD and others cannot accept a possible alternative explanation of what occured.

    Undoubtedly there are criminals involved in fuel smuggling – not just in South Armagh but hey there are violent criminal gangs rights across the world. They have made considerable profits. I imagine they live and are of the wider community in South Armagh. Indeed some probably support, even possibly actively, the Paul Quinn Campaign.

    If – suppose – Sinn Féin are trying to increase support for policing in the area and to allow the PSNI to operate freely and effectively in the area you would expect some of these fuel smugglers – who have a lot to protect – to be looking for anything to attack Sinn Féin.

    The Quinn family have already said that Paul worked as a driver at times – and was probably paid peanuts for it.

    Say some of these fuel smugglers used to be provos in the past.

    What if for example an ex-provo fuel smuggler was involved in the murder of young Paul Quinn for whatever reason – say he crashed a lorry or something or stole from them – then decided to throw his support behind the Quinn Campaign.

    No – that would all just be too insane.

  • harry

    If – suppose – Sinn Féin are trying to increase support for policing in the area and to allow the PSNI to operate freely and effectively in the area you would expect some of these fuel smugglers – who have a lot to protect – to be looking for anything to attack Sinn Féin

    so all the people that are criticising the statements made by gerry and conor are doing so because they are all fuel smugglers with huge criminal empires to protect?

    i wish i did have a large criminal empire, then i would not be worrying about the electric bill that came this morning.

  • Pete Baker

    Rapsunel

    The confusion was mine. It’s the same confusion that caused the error in the Irish News report yesterday.

    I’ve edited the original post to change that line.

  • Pete Baker

    Ian

    The point about that quote from Adams’ letter

    “I note from some press reports that Paul’s father is reported as accusing me of ‘blackening’ your son’s name with allegations of criminality. I wish to assure you that at no point have I said anything which should be misconstrued in this way.”

    Is precisely that it does contradict both Conor Murphy’s “assessment of what the young man was involved with”, and his claim to consistency.

  • Ian

    Pete, that’s why I said “leaving aside Murphy’s assorted statements”, which I agree were unequivocally accusatory (and as such not only inconsistent with his party leader but also totally inconsistent with his pleas for allegations of IRA involvement to be based on hard evidence).

  • sceolaing

    doubter suggests that some fuel smugglers may have been provos in the past; he is correct but is missing the more important picture that many fuel smugglers are provos at present so that crying’fuel smuggler’ does not let the provos off the hook over the murder of paul quinn or indeed the threats to witnesess. s.f.s stance on policing is totally self serving as they are well aware of the criminals in their own midst in sth armagh and ,indeed,elsewhere. if you want some rot gut alcohol your best bet would be a provo or someone with contacts to them.
    S.F. still have anti policing posters up in sth armagh! what is that about?