Gerry Adams under pressure to ‘come clean’ after IRA bomber’s claims

Gerry Adams under pressure to ‘come clean’ after IRA bomber’s claims
By Fionnan Sheahan Political Editor
Irish Independent
Monday September 24 2012

GERRY Adams is set to come under major pressure in the Dail after a former close ally made shocking claims about the TD’s personal involvement in Provo executions.

Dolours Price, who was once one of Mr Adams’s feared inner sanctum, has described how he ordered her to ferry captives across the Border to be murdered.

She also claimed he personally authorised her to carry out a bombing blitz in Britain.

The timing of the revelations mean that some government and opposition TDs will demand Mr Adams resign his Dail seat and fight the allegations.

Informers

Many deputies now believe the Sinn Fein president must “come clean” on his IRA past amid fresh allegations by Price again linking him to the murder of Belfast mother-of-10 Jean McConville.

The McConville family have already demanded, in an interview with the Irish Independent earlier this month, that gardai arrest the Sinn Fein leader over these allegations.

Price, the convicted IRA bomber, in an in-depth newspaper interview, says:

? The Sinn Fein president was Officer Commanding of the Belfast Brigade of the Provisional IRA.

? He ordered her to drive alleged informers across the border into the Republic of Ireland, where they would be executed.

? Mr Adams was the key decision-maker in the IRA bombing campaign in Britain.

? He recruited volunteers for the bombing campaign, warning it would be a “hanging offence” if they were caught.

? He approved of the 1973 bombing of the Old Bailey court house in London, which killed one man and injured 200 other people.

Ms Price directly implicates Mr Adams in the killing by the IRA of Ms McConville — one of the so-called disappeared.

She says Mr Adams called her the night Ms McConville was captured by the IRA and that he normally ordered her “to take the people away”.

“I drove away Jean McConville. I don’t know who gave the instructions to execute her. Obviously it was decided between the General Headquarters staff and the people in Belfast. Gerry Adams would have been part of that negotiation as to what was to happen to her,” she said.

Ms McConville’s murder was the most notorious of the disappeared cases and Mr Adams has previously denied accusations he was involved.

Price served eight years in jail for her role in the Old Bailey bombing.

“Who sent me to London to blow it up? Gerry Adams. Yeah, fully sanctioned,” she says.

Price admits she has fallen out with Mr Adams over the peace process and is angry with him for denying he was a member of the IRA.

Sinn Fein describes her as “not friendly towards Sinn Fein and an anti-peace process republican”.

But the Sinn Fein president continues to deny the claims.

“I reject again, as I have consistently rejected, the allegations,” he said in a statement.

Fine Gael’s party chairman Charlie Flanagan said it was time for Mr Adams to “come clear” about his IRA past.

“Adams and Sinn Fein cannot embrace democratic norms until they face up to their past. The ballot box must be firmly held in both hands,” he said.

Last week, Fianna Fail leader Micheal Martin left Mr Adams floundering during a live TV debate as he pointed to his IRA past.

“You know about my past. You have never acknowledged your past. You lead an organisation that carried out a campaign of murder,” Mr Martin said.

Controversy

The controversy has also sucked in Sinn Fein’s new generation of TDs. Sinn Fein TD Peadar Toibin said everybody was entitled to the presumption of innocence, including Mr Adams.

Mr Adams has continually denied he was a member of the IRA — let alone a leader or member of the IRA Army Council.

But respected authors and historians have cited Mr Adams as an IRA leader since the 1970s. Former Taoiseach Bertie Ahern also said he assumed Mr Adams and Martin McGuinness were leaders of the IRA. Unlike Mr Adams, Mr McGuinness does not deny he was a member of the IRA.

– Fionnan Sheahan Political Editor