Gerry Adams: "The IRA was never defeated"

Gerry Adams: "The IRA was never defeated"

SINN Féin president Gerry Adams has marked the 10 year anniversary of the IRA ceasefire by saying the republican organisation was “never defeated”.

In a statement marking the day that the IRA formally declared its armed campaign was over, Mr Adams said: “I note the recent remarks of British Prime Minister David Cameron when he claimed that 'British resolve saw off the IRA.”

“This is a distortion of recent history. It also betrays a worrying ignorance on the part of a British Premier of the dynamics which have propelled the Irish peace process for many years.”

He went on to say: “The reality is that the IRA was never defeated and that again and again it was Irish republicans, including the IRA leadership, which took bold steps to bolster the peace process and to maintain positive political momentum.”

Mr Adams' statement was to mark the IRA’s formal end to its armed campaign a decade ago on July 28, 2005.

The move, he claims, gave support to “purely peaceful and democratic” methods of achieving the organisation’s republican objectives.

Mr Adams also urged the British Government to re-engage with the peace process. His comments come as Stormont's welfare reforms controversy continues in Belfast.

“By slashing hundreds of millions of pounds from the finances of the North's Executive, the British Government has attacked the ability of the political institutions to deliver for citizens,” he said.

“In order to restore hope, to rescue the political institutions and re-establish positive political momentum, the British Government must provide the Executive with the tools to invest in public services, grow the economy and address the legacy of the past.”

“The British Government needs to re-engage with the peace process,” he added.

The Irish Government also did not escape unscathed from his statement.

Mr Adams criticised the Dáil for being “detached” in its dealing with the North of Ireland.

“The Irish Government cannot escape its responsibilities under the Good Friday Agreement either,” he said.

“The Taoiseach needs urgently to take up his responsibilities towards citizens in the North and to be a champion of the peace process.”