As the Irish Times notes, at a seminar in Belfast yesterday the Irish Justice Minister, Dermot Ahern, commited his government to providing adequate resources to tackle the continuing republican paramilitary threat.
And last night those republican paramilitaries are believed to have been responsible for a car bomb in the UK City of Culture for 2013.
Interestingly, the owner of a hotel near the site of the explosion is quoted in this iol report
Mr [Garvan] O’Doherty said there would be setbacks, but people were determined to find a solution.
He added: “There needs to be dialogue. There is dialogue. There is dialogue going on to try and sort this issue out, to try and understand where they (dissidents) are coming from.
“A number of us are involved in various strands to try and ensure we get the message across to try and understand they are on about, because they are on the wrong track. This work will continue.”
Well, you could always read what they’ve said already…
On the political front they dismissed Sinn Féin’s claims that its electoral strategy would ultimately yield a united Ireland despite the majority of nationalists in Northern Ireland still voting for Sinn Féin and an overwhelming majority backing the peace process.
The Real IRA insisted, however, that support for them was building and they had turned away hundreds of young disaffected nationalists because they didn’t have the capacity to absorb so many members.
“From the point of view of republican communities, there is still a heavily armed British police force that casually uses plastic baton rounds, CS gas and Tasers, carry out house raids, stop and search operations and general harassment.
“There’s still a 5,000-strong British army garrison, a new MI5 HQ in Belfast, and a British secretary of state. Republican communities are still subjected to sectarian parades and the right to protest is being met with intimidation and violence.”