Tuesday, December 13, 2016

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Brian Stack Should Never Have Been ... Murdered

Courtesy of The Transcripts Audrey Carville (AC) interviews Sinn Féin president Gerry Adams (GA) about giving the authorities the name of the person who confirmed that Brian Stack was killed by the IRA.

Morning Ireland
RTÉ Radio One
9 December 2016
Audio Player


AC: Gerry Adams, Good Morning.

GA: Good Morning, Audrey.

AC: You’re embroiled in another controversy to do with The Troubles and the IRA’s actions. Do you know specifically who murdered Brian Stack?

GA:
No, I don’t. And let me say again that Brian Stack should never have been killed. He should never have been murdered. That shooting was wrong. I’ve been very, very clear about all of that. And let’s just you know rehearse very briefly, Audrey, what happened: The Stack Family came to me in 2013 and we put together a collaborative process to try and achieve what they wanted. And what did they want? They said they wanted to know if the IRA had killed their father. They wanted acknowledgment. They wanted closure. They said they didn’t want revenge. They were not interested in anyone going to jail. Austin expressed a wish to meet those who were involved and so on. He told me he was very engaged himself in restorative justice and he’d like to meet those responsible. And I told him that I thought it would be very unlikely that we would ever get him names. That if the IRA was involved that certainly, in the short term, I didn’t think that those responsible would meet with him but in the longer term God knows what was possible. And we worked out a process. The two of us sat down and put together a process that could have worked and it was based on confidentiality and trust. And I actually thought that I’d developed a good working relationship with Austin in the course of all of that. And I think he has acknowledged this confidentiality and the process that we put together.

AC: And as far as you were concerned, after that meeting in 2013 with the man with whom you along with the Stack brothers met as far as you were concerned was that the end of the process?

GA: Well that’s exactly what happened, Audrey. If you recall…

AC: …But why then two years later, three years later, in 2016, why were you sending email to the Garda Commissioner containing names?

GA: Well if you check out any of your records and let me just answer your question very directly: When we met the person involved as part of the process that we had agreed Austin actually reassured the person involved that he would keep his confidentiality that even if the Gards came to him that they wouldn’t be working with them. They were grateful. He put out a statement – now even though they got hard news – and I don’t want to minimise the fact that this is their Daddy who was shot and subsequently died as a result of the shooting, they put out a statement thanking me, saying that they had got more information than three Garda investigations and then as you said the process more or less ended at that point. And then what happened was three years later there was an election campaign and Micheál Martin and Fine Gael representatives then resurrected this issue and it was part of a negative election campaign led by Micheál Martin and some senior Fine Gael people against me and against the Sinn Féin party and the confidentiality agreement was thrown out.

AC: …Okay, so clearly now…

GA:
…I was accused in the course of that. Sorry, sorry – just let me make this – I was accused in the course of that of withholding information from An Garda Siochána. The only information I had was that that was given to me by Austin Stack. And I didn’t see Prime Time but I have a note of it and I’m advised that Austin Stack had accused me of breaking the confidentiality…

AC: …He did, yes…

GA: …(crosstalk) of all of this because he said I gave names and disclosed things that were said at a meeting to An Garda Siochána…

AC: …Okay…

GA: …and all along he’s been denying that he gave me names and now clearly he accepts it.

AC: But coming back to the point of the Stack Family whose father was murdered by the IRA: They clearly want justice. They’re clearly not satisfied with not knowing specifically who murdered their father and not being in a position to have any sort of meeting with that person or however they view justice. Now they said that the man you met in 2013 – you described him as a ‘trusted confidante’ – have you ever asked that man who specifically murdered Brian Stack?

GA: No, I didn’t and let me say this…

AC: …Why not?

GA: …so bear with me. I asked that man to see if he could investigate, in the first instance, was the IRA involved at all. The first I got of what we were being told was when we met with him. The meeting with him was the one which was done – it wasn’t meeting with me – it was a meeting with the Stack brothers which I facilitated. Now, this is a really important point: When the election campaign passed this issue passed. That was a year ago. It’s only come up again and it’s only come up again because once again two weeks in a trot the Fianna Fáil leader has brought this issue into the floor of the Dáil chamber…

AC: …Yes, but Austin and Oliver Stack…

GA: …that is no place…

AC: …and their other brother and their mother they remain and they want answers…

GA: …Of course…

AC: …and the man who met with them in…

GA:
…Of course they do but…

AC: …Yes, but let me ask the question…

GA: …Okay…

AC: …The man who met with them in 2013 clearly knows who killed their father. You know that man. So are you going to give his name to the authorities so that they can interview him?

GA: Well, I want to finish the point I was trying to make…

AC: …No. It’s a very simple and direct question.

GA: I’m going to answer your question, Audrey, please. The fact is this should not be a party political issue or part of the debate in Leinster House that we have seen…

AC: ….Okay…

GA: …over the last number of…

AC: …you have made that point.

GA: …Okay…

AC: …You’ve made that point…

GA: …and secondly…

AC: …Yeah. Are you going to give that man’s name to the authorities?

GA: Well let me answer that. Austin Stack says he knows the name. He says he’s given the name to An Garda Siochána. Now why on earth, when he was part of a process that he and I put together, which is more important than me, which is more important than the man that we met and which is more important, with respect, than any one single family – and I absolutely sympathise with the Stack Family. There are thousands of families…

AC:
…Yeah…

GA: …who want a truth and reconciliation…

AC: ….Gerry Adams…

GA: …process (crosstalk)…

AC: …will you give that man’s name – No, will you give that man’s name to the authorities?

GA: I have set out in the Dáil why we should not, if we want a proper truth and reconciliation process, if we want to bring closure to all the families involved, that we have to honour commitments given…

AC: …Yes…

GA: …I gave a commitment to the Stack Family…

AC: …Will you give that man’s name to the authorities, yes or no?

GA: I’ve already pointed out to you, Audrey, and stated in the Dáil why we should not give these names and why we need – in order to get an integrity into a process which will bring relief and closure to all the families involved why we have to honour agreements made. I gave commitments to the Stack Family. I kept my commitments.

AC: …Yes, so…

GA: …I will continue to do that.

AC: As an elected TD, as a member of the Oireachtas of this state, you are saying that while you may have information on a crime you are not going to pass that information to the authorities.

GA: No, I’m not saying. I don’t have information on a crime.

AC:
You know the man who knows who killed Brian Stack.

GA:
Well sorry, the, the – Austin Stack has said that the individual we met told us he met the perpetrators. He didn’t tell us that. Austin Stack also said he told us that they were alive. He didn’t tell us that, either. What he told us was contained in a typed statement which was given to the Stack brothers which they then wrote down and they then asked him a number of questions and all of that – I took very little part in the discussion at all. And they then released…

AC: …No, but you know the person who knows who killed Brian Stack and you’re saying this morning that you’re not going to give that person’s name to the authorities.

GA: Audrey, you didn’t hear what I said. He never said he knew who killed Brian Stack. He said, which he had been asked to do, that he had information that the IRA was involved and then he explained that and that is a matter of public record. Now let me come round to this point…

AC: …No, he also said, he also said that that person was disciplined.

GA: Yes.

AC: How was he disciplined?

GA: I don’t know.

AC:
Was he shot?

GA: I don’t – well if I don’t know I don’t know – but let me come round to this point…

AC: ….I mean did you not ask questions of this?

GA: No, I didn’t. Because the job that I had to do was to bring closure to this family on a very specific brief which they had given me and which I delivered for them and I’ve done this with other families in the past. Now, if we come round to all of this and the way it’s being handled now, and bear in mind there is no truth and reconciliation process in place, despite commitments from the two governments, despite obligations on our Taoiseach and on successive British Prime Ministers there’s still not a process in place. How on earth are we going to get such a process in place if it becomes – and if this awful killing of this man, like all of the others, becomes a subject of a political point-scoring that’s ongoing…

AC: …But Gerry Adams…

GA: …how on earth can you break commitments that were given? How on earth if we break confidential processes are we going to get to the end of the road for all of the families who’ve been bereaved or have injured loved ones? How are we going to do it?

AC: …But Gerry Adams, how on earth can there be any truth process when most people believe that you cannot tell the truth about this?

GA:
Well, I have told the truth about this and incidentally, in all that I have done in relation to these issues, I helped with the Smithwick investigation, I’m still working on the issue of trying to return the bodies of the ‘disappeared’ …

AC: …But Gerry Adams you have denied…

GA: …I have been working – sorry, sorry, sorry – but Martin McGuinness…

AC:
…just let me finish…

GA: …and others…

AC: …let me finish…

GA: …and that has to be our focus in this case.

AC: Yes. But you have denied being in the IRA. You have denied that the IRA robbed the Northern Bank. You denied the IRA murdered Detective Garda Jerry McCabe. You denied the Colombia Three were training FARC. You denied Máiría Cahill and Paudie McGahon’s claims. How can you ask of others what you’re not prepared to do yourself?

GA: Well first of all I am prepared and I’ve said this very publicly – and there is a huge difference between the atmosphere and the acoustics around this issue in this part of the island and in the other part of the island. I have said quite publicly, and Martin McGuinness has said quite publicly and we have put forward propositions and ideas and proposals because our generation of Republicans, who have survived the conflict, want to bring to an end to those families who are still seeking truth and that’s our commitment. And I said I would cooperate with any process and I think the proof of that, Audrey, if you’re looking for the proof is: Did I deliver for the Stack Family in terms of what they asked me to do?

AC: …Okay…

GA: …They said, not me, that they thanked me for what I had done in 2013. That was three years ago. The issue was only resurrected in the midst of an election campaign and the issue is only resurrected now because the Fianna Fáil leader and the Taoiseach are politically point-scoring on this issue…

AC:
…Okay…

GA: …while they, they – sorry – while they have failed to put forward the type of process that would bring closure to all of the families who need closure…

AC: …Thank you…

GA:
…Are they still committed to doing that?…

AC: Thank you very much…

GA: …Thank you, Audrey…

AC: …Gerry Adams, leader of Sinn Féin. (ends)

2 comments :

Boyne Rover said...

This is a very serious situation I totally agree but listening to Adams is like listening to the famous song Lanigans Ball …he stepped out and I stepped in again and so on and so on …if only there was a half decent interviewer around they could rip him to pieces over this because the vital question to be asked is why is he now admitting to touting on his comrades


larry hughes said...

Gerry seems to know where everybody is and how to get in contact with them, without knowing who they are. WOW.