We, the Republican POWs in Maghaberry Jail, Co Antrim, would like to express our thanks for the support given to us over the past year, it is as always greatly appreciated. We again ask for your continued support over the coming months and year ahead.
We would like to highlight that there is a precedent of consequences that followed the denial of Political Status. In the past these consequences have had a high price for all sides, but when it comes to our identity as political prisoners no price is too high. With that being said we are simply asking for the implementation of what we agreed upon in the August 2010 Agreement and the only interpretation should be exactly what was agreed not only on paper but also verbally.
The stocktake, which was a review of progress, is yet another failed mechanism which was far too ambiguous to have any hope of mending the long broken down agreement. This stocktake was made public with the intentions of creating more accountability as regards the Agreements’ full implementation. Once made public it was immediately attacked by the DUP and POA cowards.
This attack is subject to public record and is archived online. The attack commenced on November 18, 2014 in a justice committee meeting in which a line of questioning was put to the Assessment Team, Director General and their Deputy about the stocktake in which the terms of the Agreement were grossly exaggerated. During the course of the meeting the 'so called' great nationalist representatives of Provisional Sinn Féin and the SDLP, who were also present, failed to challenge the Unionist onslaught.
The DUP demanded that the Agreement be scraped and Edwin Poots went even further than most by making false allegations that there were lethal weapons on the Republican landings. The landings were subsequently searched on the orders of the Director General on November 19. This was nothing short of an attempt by the DUP to get a reaction from the Republican POWs. We call upon those 'so called' nationalist representatives to grow a back bone and stand up to the DUP. Edwin Poots continues with his scaremongering when he talks about screws being attacked within Maghaberry; however failing to state where and when these attacks took place. If Edwin Poots cared for the facts he would know that there has not been one single attack on screws from Republican POWs on the Republican wings.
For those genuine individuals who have taken the time to try and help resolve the issues surrounding the August 12 Agreement their help has been gratefully appreciated. However for those seeking notoriety or a political platform from their involvement should not waste their time as they will receive neither.
At this time we would like to see this impasse resolved and there is an easy way of doing it. This would be to deal with the core issues within the agreement and all other matters can then be dealt with through the forum with a suitable independent chair. The current chair, former BOV member Tom Millar will never be acceptable to us. We should stress that at no time were we consulted about his appointment.
Remember that the fire still burns within us, our hearts and minds belong to the Republic proclaimed in Easter week 1916. We would once again like to pledge our allegiance to the Republican Movement, Republican Sinn Féin, Cabhair and our comrades in arms.
We salute you
Continuity not Compromise