Statement from the Charlie Agnew Cumann, Republican Sinn Féin, Armagh City
“Republican Prisoners have a long history of honouring their word when on compassionate leave. The current British administration seems intent on punishing Republican prisoners during the most difficult and vulnerable time they can go through” according to a statement from the Charlie Agnew Cumann, Republican Sinn Féin, Armagh City, on June 1, 2012.
“Republican prisoners who are currently incarcerated in Maghaberry prison are enduring the most horrendous conditions and barbarity at the hands of the British administration, propped up by all the politicos in Stormont. The prisoners have to go through invasive strip searching; controlled movement is imposed on Republican landings and free association completely removed.
“Life as a Republican prisoner is one of hardship and daily challenges. Due to the inhumane conditions, the Republican prisoners have been on a no wash protest to try and end the unacceptable conditions. Now it would seem Republican prisoners are facing the refusal of compassionate parole as a means to punish them for their political beliefs and protest.
“In January 2012, protesting POW Damien McKenna was refused compassionate parole to attend his father’s funeral with no recourse to appeal the decision. The decision was engineered to be made after 4pm which meant the High court was finished for the day meaning the prison authorities decision was final. This Machiavellian behaviour in itself is unjust and must be challenged.
“In May 2012, Political Hostage Martin Corey applied for compassionate parole only to be passed from pillar to post for two full days before a decision was made. Finally a decision to allow release for one and a half hours was given 15 minutes before the funeral was due to start for his brother who had died.
“His conditions where deplorable. He was only allowed to the funeral Mass, he arrived at 1pm and had to be back in Jail for 3pm, the jail being more than a half and hours drive, in total he was only allowed with his family to grief for a short period.
“The issue of compassionate parole is an emotive one. Republican prisoners have always honoured their word and the British state, at various times, have always denied leave as a form of punishment.
“We the Republican people must now take this issue to our hearts, we must campaign for better compassionate parole conditions for prisoners and for the refusal of compassionate parole to cease.
“Along with this we must continue in our fight to secure Political status for prisoners and demand that Political hostages Martin Corey and Marian Price are released immediately”, the statement concluded.
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- Statement from the POW Department Republican Sinn Féin 223 Parnell Street Dublin 1 00353-1-8729747 00353-87-9374277 (seachranaidhe1.wordpress.com)
- Statement from the Family & Friends of Republican prisoners, Maghaberry. 19th May 2012 (seachranaidhe1.wordpress.com)
- Free Marian Price ” Don’t Let Her Root in Prison ! (seachranaidhe1.wordpress.com)