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The Sunday World understands members of the family negotiated the deal using an intermediary after the soldier indicated he wanted to pay his respects. There were concerns he would have been targeted had he come home following warnings from the dissident outfit that anyone serving with the British Army would be regarded a legitimate target. A deal was agreed that the CIRA would allow safe passage for the soldier to attend the funeral. The deal only became public in the wake of the funeral which was held last week in Co Clare.
In a chilling statement, which was delivered at the Republican Sinn Fein Sean South Commemoration in Limerick in January, Continuity IRA prisoners at Portlaoise Prison declared that it considers Irish people who join the British Army as a ” legitimate target “. The statement, was read out at the Republican Plot at Mount Saint Lawrence cemetery during the commemoration for Limerick IRA man Sean South who was killed in a raid on the RUC Brookeborough Barracks in 1957. At the commemoration, a man speaking on behalf of CIRA prisoners, told around 60 supporters ” weve seen from recent years that in this city of Limerick, that Irishmen are considering a career in the British Army – the same British Army that holds six of our counties. ” Whether they are motivated by financial reasons or a sense of adventurism, we take this opportunity to say that the moment you don a British uniform, you become a legitimate target for the IRA.” The Ministry of Defence confirmed that every Irish person serving was informed of the threat. ” We condemn any threat of mindless violence against members of the British Armed Forces,” said a spokesman.
With many thanks to : Richard Sullivan, Sunday World.
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