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Arms body to provide weapons inventory

By Brian Rowan

Decommissioning chief John de Chastelain is to hold talks with the British and Irish governments as his Commission prepares to stand down after its near 13-year peace mission in Ireland.

The governments yesterday published the latest report by the Independent International Commission on Decommissioning (IICD) — its last but one.

It covers the most recent arms moves by the UDA, the Official IRA, INLA, the breakaway UDA faction in south east Antrim and what the Commission refers to as the “Shoukri Paramilitary Element”. This is another splinter group within the UDA under the control of one-time north Belfast ‘brigadier’ and ‘inner council’ member Andre Shoukri.

The IICD ended its role in Northern Ireland on February 9 and in the Republic 16 days later.

And the amnesty provisions that allowed for weapons to be decommissioned without forensic testing no longer exist.

The IICD’s final report will include an inventory — the Commission’s counting of guns and bullets and the logging of all explosives put beyond use.

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