“MI5 is spending £40m a year in counter-terrorist operations in Northern Ireland.”

In the Observer Henry McDonald reports on MI5’s expenditure on national security in Northern Ireland, including operations against republican paramilitary groups, via MI5’s £20million regional headquarters. From the Observer report

MI5 is spending £40m a year in counter-terrorist operations in Northern Ireland. In a bid to stop the Real IRA, Continuity IRA and the Óglaigh na hÉireann faction from destabilising power sharing, MI5 has set aside 15% of its annual £250m budget, the Observer has learned.

Around 10% of MI5’s 2,200 UK agents are employed in Northern Ireland, security sources said this weekend. As well as involvement in operations against dissident republican terrorists, MI5’s regional HQ in Holywood, Co Down, also eavesdrops on al-Qaida suspects both in Northern Ireland and Britain.

And a reminder from one those previous posts

Sinn Fein’s policing and justice spokesman, Alex Maskey, told Monitor: ‘I treat anything MI5 does with suspicion and our aim is to get it out of here.’

Well, he would say that, wouldn’t he.. But that’s just another legacy issue.

The Historical Enquiries Team might yet reveal more of that elusive truth about the past..

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  • £40m? A couple of hundred spooks? All trying to preserve the status quo? And out of the Westminster budget?

    Can we have a show of hands of those against?

    Ah! thought so!

  • KieranJ

    Maybe this is what’s needed in Belfast :

    With the help of sympathizers working in Dublin Castle, the seat of British power in Ireland, Collins was able to access the internal workings of the British intelligence system in Ireland. Collins also developed a team of ruthless and efficient assassins known as the “Squad” who were dispatched to kill British agents once identified. On Sunday November 21, 1920, on Collins’ orders eleven supposed British agents were assassinated in Dublin.

  • Pigeon Toes

    They have vacancies at present


    Business Support Officers

    £17,096 + Benefits

    Greater Belfast..Owing to the sensitive nature of our work, discretion is vital. You should only tell your immediate family and/or partner if you are considering applying to work for the Security Service or if you make an application. During the recruitment and vetting process we will ask you who knows that you have applied. If you are successful, you will be given a full briefing about why discretion is important throughout your career.”

    So Shhh…

    Closing date 18th June 2009

    Mind you I’d be too embarassed to tell anyone the pay is so crap..

  • Driftwood

    Palace Barracks still operates as an operational army barracks, with the huge logistics base, Camp Kinnegar, on the other side of the carriageway. So MI5 (great advert for staff in The Irish News this week)are getting value for money from the MoD.
    Belfast is an excellent home from home for the Security Service. On a secure Army barracks in the UK’s most mono ethnic city (99% British) beside an Airport and main transport links.
    Good value for money. And excellent for Northern Ireland, being the main base for our Security Services outside London.

  • Danny O’Connor

    220 agents in NI,accountable to ?.

  • Pigeon Toes

    Wonder if they ask you at interview how many times you have mislaid your laptop?

  • Anon

    [i]in the UK’s most mono ethnic city (99% British)[/i]

    Looks like Provo Sinn Féin aren’t the only lot with “legacy issues”. I’d like to see you tell the average man or woman in Angrytown that they’re British!

  • Driftwood

    Irish is British, in every social, cultural and geographic use of the word. Just think Manchester United, Eastenders, Marks & Spencers, Tesco etc ,but sometimes seeing aint believing.
    The similarities outweigh the differences.

    But hey, it’s no big deal, we can keep on pretending, eh?

  • Anon

    [i]But hey, it’s no big deal, we can keep on pretending, eh? [/i]

    ‘Hey’,I think you’re the only person pretending.

    By following your logic I’ve now come to the conclusion that every person living in the British Isles is actually American!!! Friends, McDonalds, Holywood films, rappers, Hannah Montana, Burger King, Walmart (Asda).

    Indeed, the similarities outweigh the differences – it’s not like people in Belfast, Derry, Strabane, Newry etc. etc. have their own language, culture or sports and, most importantly, actually consider themselves to be Irish. “But hey”, it’s no big deal, we can keep on pretending that we are Irish [i]and[/i] British.

  • Driftwood

    At least you got the British Isles right.
    Who, or what is ‘Hannah Montana’?

  • Anon

    Don’t you pretend, you dirty old man.

    It’s really quite sad that you can’t accept that the vast majority of people living on this island are Irish. Even Paisley proudly admitted to considering himself an Irishman.

    Have you alerted the United Nations that the Republic of Ireland has been fraudulently parading itself as an independent Republic there since 1955 when, in fact, it really is de jure part of the UK?

    I can’t believe I’ve been drawn into another petty us v them debate on Slugger, “but hey” ignorance is not bliss.

  • KieranJ

    The Irish Republic was declared in 1949.

    Hannah Montana is a Jewish teenaged yenta who lives in that State’s Capital of Helena.

    I’m kidding in the second paragraph of course but it sounds plausible considering the nonsense presently being disgourged by American television.

  • Anonanonanonanonitgoes

    [i]The Irish Republic was declared in 1949. [/i]

    Yeah, cheers James. But if you’d bothered to actually read what I wrote then you would realise that I made it clear that the Irish Republic joined the UN in 1955.

  • abucs

    Surely the money can be better spent on more important issues – like the promotion of the Irish Language. :o)

  • 0b101010

    £17,096 + Benefits

    That’s laughably pathetic pay for the role, let alone working with Intelligence. Of course, that might not be what they actually get once they sign the OSA.

  • Gabriel

    I am sure Marty does not need vetting.

  • Danny O’Connor

    I was once told that “British Intelligence” is an oxymoron.

  • dave

    “I was once told that “British Intelligence” is an oxymoron.”

    Every single one of the paramilitary organisations riddled with informants might disagree.

  • fin

    “I was once told that “British Intelligence” is an oxymoron.”

    Every single one of the paramilitary organisations riddled with informants might disagree.

    Indeed Dave, and families like the McCords and Finucanes would agree or disagree?

  • oracle

    Of the £38.3 million total

    £24 million is spent on running costs, wages,heating,electric,maintenance,expenses,equipment,ect,ect.

    £14.3 million is spent on sweeteners and retainers (ie: informant payments)

    1.7 million to UDA
    1.1 million to UVF
    0.5 million to CIRA
    0.9 million to O.N.H
    0.4 million to RIRA
    9.7 million to S/F IRA

  • Danny O’Connor

    Fin,oxymoronic,in that there is a contradiction- there is very little British about it.
    Stakeknife ,Nelson etc-and there is very little intelligence about it either,dirty tricks ,paying gangsters and murderers.

  • latcheeco

    Guys be nice,
    They’re all reading Slugger.

  • SM

    They’re all reading Slugger.
    Posted by latcheeco on May 25, 2009 @ 04:15 PM

    Maybe that’s why they only get £17,096 + Benefits 😉

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