Mick’s already mentioned the cant from a tightrope walking Sinn Féin’s Gerry Adams about Hugh Orde’s request for technical assistance from the Special Reconnaissance Regiment. But there’s another point to be made about the statement Adams issued on Saturday on the same subject.
“There can be no place for so called British Special Forces within any civic and accountable policing structures.”
As Frank Millar reported in the Irish Times, speaking in the House of Commons yesterday the Northern Ireland Secretary of State was unambiguous about how, even when policing and justice powers are devolved, the Chief Constable will retain that operational ability.
“The decisions of the Chief Constable to call in technical back-up support, to which the hon. Gentleman was referring, would, of course, not change under any arrangements in the future for devolution; those are decisions for the Chief Constable.”