Belfast Telegraph

Wednesday 2 September 2015

Threat of funding withdrawal remains in place for UDA

By Noel McAdam

Published 04/10/2007

The threat to withdraw Government funding from a UDA-linked project remained in place today, despite reports that the paramilitary organisation has held recent talks with the decommissioning body.

Confirmation of the contact, believed to involve a new UDA interlocutor, came as it emerged that Executive Minister Margaret Ritchie will not be in Northern Ireland next Tuesday when the 60-day deadline elapses.

Instead, the Social Development Minister will make an assessment of any UDA progress on decommissioning when she returns later in the week.

It has also been confirmed that Ms Ritchie also held talks around three weeks ago with the head of the International Commission on Decommissioning, (IICD), General John de Chastelain.

But a spokesman for the DSD said the meeting had been for the Minister to outline her position on the withdrawal of £1.2m funding for the Conflict Transfromation Project.

Ms Ritchie is travelling to Brussels on Monday night for a series of Open Days designed to promote Northern Ireland as a successful region within Europe.

"These are very important events and not something the Minister would have wanted to stay away from," a spokesman said.

A DSD spokesman said: "The Minister returns on Thursday and will begin to make her assessment then, but that does not mean a statement is likely on Thursday or Friday."

From the web

Sponsored Videos

Your Comments

COMMENT RULES: Comments that are judged to be defamatory, abusive or in bad taste are not acceptable and contributors who consistently fall below certain criteria will be permanently blacklisted. The moderator will not enter into debate with individual contributors and the moderator’s decision is final. It is Belfast Telegraph policy to close comments on court cases, tribunals and active legal investigations. We may also close comments on articles which are being targeted for abuse. Problems with commenting?

Read More

From Belfast Telegraph