Belfast Telegraph

RUC-Garda relations at a low ebb during the peak of the Troubles

BY SHANE HICKEY

Co-operation between the RUC and Garda became increasingly difficult during the peak of the Troubles as many gardai believed their counterparts were operating a shoot -to-kill policy and were resented by the Catholic community.

Details of a meeting in October 1984 between then Secretary of State Douglas Hurd, the Irish Foreign Affairs Minister Peter Barry and Justice Minister Michael Noonan illustrate the degree of deterioration in relations between the two forces.

Mr Hurd said RUC Chief Constable John Hermon and Garda commissioner Lawrence Wren "were not on terms" over allegations that the RUC worked to suppress a witness wanted by gardai.

Mr Hurd wrote: "In addition the RUC was insecure; for example a leak in a current case which had cost the Garda a valuable intelligence source could be attributed to the RUC."

Plans by the Irish delegation to reorganise the RUC were dismissed by Mr Hurd.

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