“We’ve never been near Irish republicans..”

Along with the background articles in the Irish Times noted previously, it’s worth mentioning the reported disturbances in Craigavon, and elsewhere, following the murder of Police Constable Stephen Carroll – and more reported tonight. Meanwhile there’s been plenty of TV coverage today of a meeting between the Lord Mayor of Belfast, Sinn Féin’s Tom Hartley, and UPRG spokesman Frankie Gallagher. Interestingly the Irish Times reported that Frankie Gallagher told RTÉ

“We are going to meet the Lord Mayor of Belfast .. we’ve never done this before. We’ve never been near Irish republicans or ‘Shinners’.”

Hmm.. Not quite “never been near”, Frankie.. Btw, how is that decommissioning going?