Sinn Féin removes controversial IRA-themed merchandise from its website after backlash
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Sinn Féin removes controversial IRA-themed merchandise from its website after backlash

AN online shop ran by Sinn Féin has stopped selling IRA-themed merchandise after claims it "glamorised terrorism".

Last month, the party was slammed for selling items such as a t-shirt with the words ‘IRA Undefeated Army’ on its ‘Sinn Féin Bookshop’ online store.

The shirt was one of many articles of clothing, books, badges and posters available for purchase featuring depictions of IRA soldiers and sectarian slogans such as ‘Sniper at Work’.

The ‘Sinn Féin Bookshop’ website is owned by Republican Merchandising Company Limited, which itself is controlled by the party – according to documents filed to the Companies Registration Office.

It also operated a bookshop on Parnell Square in Dublin, until its closure last October. All sales are now generated through the website.

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Last month, Fine Gael Senator Joe O’Reilly called for the shop’s IRA merchandise to be withdrawn because it “glamorised terrorism” and “glorified violence”.

Another IRA-themed t-shirt sold on the website (Picture: Sinn Féin Bookshop)

He added that Sinn Féin “must abandon this kind of thing”.

The party, which has since elected Mary Lou McDonald to replace former president Gerry Adams, did not respond to queries asking what prompted the withdrawal of the items.

Speaking after becoming Sinn Féin’s new president earlier this month, Mary Lou McDonald defended her use of an IRA slogan at her inaugural speech, when she said: “Up the Republic, up the rebels, agus tiocfaidh ár lá”.

Ms McDonald insisted that the term was not “harking back to the past”.

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Speaking to Ryan Tubridy on RTÉ’s The Late Late Show, the 48-year-old said: “I was setting out things that I believe passionately in – things like social progress, social justice, shared prosperity – a new Ireland.

“And for me to utter the words ‘tiocfaidh ár lá’ refers absolutely to that vision of a new Ireland.”