Belfast Telegraph

Jeffrey Donaldson: Gerry Adams should be investigated for 'inciting hatred' just like Pastor McConnell

By Claire Williamson

DUP MP Jeffrey Donaldson has written to the Chief Constable of the PSNI asking him to investigate language used by Sinn Fein president Gerry Adams for consideration of 'inciting hatred'.

Gerry Adams sparked outrage this week as he swore during the public meeting in Enniskillen where he made controversial remarks about "breaking the b*******".

He later apologised for the language used.

In the same meeting Sinn Fein MP Michelle Gildernew called the DUP's Gregory Campbell as "a b******s".

Her comments come after Mr Campbell was criticised for mocking the Irish language.

Now DUP MP Jeffrey Donaldson has said there should be an investigation in the same way that evangelical preacher Pastor McConnell was investigated for his Islam remarks earlier this year.

In May Pastor James McConnell  slammed the Islamic faith as "Satanic" and a "doctrine spawned in Hell" at Whitewell Metropolitan Taberncale in Belfast.

The PSNI then investigated a possible hate crime in relation to the comments which sparked anger in the Muslim and wider community and which Pastor McConnell later apologised for.

Pastor McConnell retired in June.

In a statement Mr Donaldson said: “When Gerry Adams talked about “breaking these b*****ds”, the comments were directed against a particular group of people based on their beliefs and national citizenship.

"His reference to people as ‘b*****ds’ and the desire to ‘break’ them make it clear there is an intention to stir up hatred. This has been further backed up by other comments made by Michelle Gildernew at the same meeting.

"I was therefore shocked to read in Thursday’s (27 November) Newsletter that the PSNI had already concluded that, “at this time,” it is not believed that Mr Adams’ comment “would constitute a criminal offence.”

"Other individuals, most recently Pastor James McConnell, have faced police questioning on the basis of remarks made.  It is right that a proper investigation should be not being treated any differently to Pastor McConnell."

Gerry Adams denied calling all unionists b*****ds at a public meeting in Co Fermanagh but apologised for his language.

"I was talking about bigots,” he told the BBC Talkback radio programme.

In response a Sinn Fein spokesman said: "It couldn't have been made clearer over the week that Gerry Adam's remarks were directed at bigots.

"Quite obviously Jeffrey must not have been listening to the weeks press reports the same way he must not have been listening at his party conference at which Gregory Campbell repeated his grossly offensive remarks towards the Irish language community.

He added: "Jeffrey Donaldson should stop grand-standing and wasting the PSNI's valuable time given that fact that they have already ruled that Mr Adams comment would not "constitute a criminal offence."

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