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Anger as dissident republicans vow terror campaign will go on

By Brett Campbell

A dissident republican threat to continue their campaign of violence has sparked fury from politicians and the wife of a police officer brutally murdered by gunmen.

The comments were made during a speech delivered in Lurgan’s Kilwilkie estate on Saturday as part of an illegal Easter Rising parade organised by Republican Sinn Fein.

Those in attendance were told: “The only way they (the British) will be removed is by force.”

A spokesman for the Continuity IRA (CIRA) paid tribute to members who “continue to be at the forefront of removing the British presence from our land”.

Kate Carroll, the widow of police officer Stephen Carroll, who was killed by the CIRA, said: “These people need to have their show of power for survival but their flags and dark glasses have achieved nothing in the past, just broken hearts.

“This country is rapidly becoming one of the most depressing places to live. I don’t want to live in rubble with a lone flag flying, because that seems to be the end result.”

Upper Bann DUP MP David Simpson said the PSNI must act, and demanded prosecutions be pursued over the parade.

“The full rigour of the law must be brought to bear on those who do this, they must face the consequences,” he said.

Ulster Unionist MLA Doug Beattie said decisive police action must follow the illegal event in Lurgan.

PSNI Chief Inspector Bernard O’Connor said a “robust investigation” was under way as part of an effort to bring law breakers before the courts, adding police took the issue of illegal parades and protests “very seriously”.

Meanwhile, an Irish Republican Socialist Party demo in west Belfast yesterday appears to have breached a Parades Commission determination.

It was only given approval following assurances from organisers that it would be “significantly different” from last year when participants were photographed wearing sunglasses and scarves to mask their face. But many were pictured yesterday in similar attire.

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