Statement by TUV leader Jim Allister:
“The article in yesterday’s Irish Times by former Irish Justice Minister Michael McDowell in which he writes that “In this State[the Republic], a de facto moratorium on investigation and prosecution of IRA members (other than those described as dissidents) came into operation” is a shockingly open admission of the moral and legal perversion which was necessary to allow the “peace process” to operate.
“Mr McDowell goes on to put it in particularly stark terms:
“Every Troubles-related murder, bombing and maiming is, on paper, a serious offence in this State by reason of the Criminal Law Jurisdiction Act of 1976.
“But the Irish government of which I was a member took the decision that further investigation and prosecution by An Garda Síochána of such historic offences was no longer warranted or justified by reason of the greater interest in ending the Provisional campaign and all other political violence in Northern Ireland.
“And so, as far as this State was concerned, a line was drawn across the page of historic Provisional IRA criminality in Northern Ireland.”
“This merely confirms what I and many others have suspected for years. Sinn Fein/IRA loudly demand prosecutions of elderly veterans while all the time knowing that the criminals of the Provisional movement will never face prosecution for their cold blooded murders.
“There is nothing noble or honourable about a process which can only survive because of such perversion of the basic norms of a democratic society.
“We should all be equal under the law and equally subject to the law yet in the Republic and in Northern Ireland this basic principle was set aside, leaving Republicans a special class of untouchables.”