Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 24 April 2014

The year Barack Obama came to town and Michaella McCollum Connolly went to jail: Who said what in 2013?

Ivan Little looks back on another year of the most memorable quotes from the political, sporting and social landscape

The President of the United States of America, Barack Obama and his wife, First Lady Michelle Obama visited the Waterfront Hall, Belfast ahead of the G8 Summit in Enniskillen.
The President of the United States of America, Barack Obama and his wife, First Lady Michelle Obama visited the Waterfront Hall, Belfast ahead of the G8 Summit in Enniskillen.

"Hello Belfast. What's the craic?"

President Barack Obama goes native as he opens his address at a pre-G8 rally at the Waterfront Hall, Belfast

"We didn't even know the G8 summit was on."

Dutch tourist who was re-routed by police to a camp in Enniskillen for G8 protesters. There was room for hundreds of demonstrators, but there were only six tents

"The most peaceful in recent memory."

David Cameron's assessment of a trouble-free G8 in Fermanagh

"I wouldn't do anything differently if we started again."

PSNI Chief Constable Matt Baggott on the security lockdown for the G8 amid claims the operation was over-the-top

"That is a bad example to set and I hope it won't have a bearing on the rest of the parading season."

Peter Robinson accuses Gerry Kelly of reckless behaviour after he was seen clinging to the bonnet of a moving police Land Rover

"There was a bit of recklessness here by some of the people in those Jeeps."

Sinn Fein's Caral Ni Chuilin accuses the police of recklessness over the Gerry Kelly Land Rover incident

"The DUP are bigots."

SDLP MP Dr Alasdair McDonnell speaking in Westminster debate. He got a ticking-off from Deputy Speaker

"I apologise sincerely for any hurt caused to those who believed my comments were directed at them."

DUP Assemblyman Jimmy Spratt says sorry for using the word 'nutters' about opponents of the Maze/Long Kesh conflict resolution centre

"Victims should not be dismissed as hysterical just because of their emotions."

Ann Travers, whose sister Mary was murdered by the IRA, welcomes an Assembly vote to stop people with serious conviction from being special advisors at Stormont

"The Orange institution will not be scapegoated."

Orange Order statement on riots

"Those who are using the cover of protest to attack the police are massively damaging the cause they support."

Peter Robinson condemns the violence which erupted after police stopped a banned march by Ligoniel Orangemen from going past Ardoyne shops

"The best and friendliest games ever."

Organiser Mike Graham on the World Police and Fire Games, which brought thousands of visitors to Belfast in spite of ongoing violence

"Calm down."

Referee's unheeded warning before abandoning a World Police and Fire Games match between the PSNI and Marbella Police football teams

"Operation Titan."

Police reveal codename for their special detective unit set up to investigate rioting in Belfast in the days and weeks after the Twelfth of July, during which 90 were arrested

"I'm innocent."

Dungannon girl Michaela McCollum arrested in Peru for drug-smuggling

"Guilty."

Michaela McCollum admits to drug charges in Peru several months after her arrest

"A monumental climbdown."

TUV leader Jim Allister responds to Peter Robinson's U-turn on support for the Maze/Long Kesh peace centre

"I don't know what the future holds for me. I am out of work."

SDLP Assemblyman Conall McDevitt resigns his seat over undeclared earnings

"We'll flush them out. There are no hiding places."

Stanley McCombe vows to fight on after he and other relatives of Omagh bomb victims are told the Government won't be ordering an inquiry into the Real IRA atrocity

"Barbaric."

East Belfast MP Naomi Long condemns the shooting of 24-year-old Jemma McGrath, which police sources blame on the UVF

"I can now begin my life at 40."

Aine Adams reacts after her father, Liam, is convicted of raping and sexually abusing her 30 years earlier

"I would have killed him if I'd known who he was."

Alfie McCrory on helping Shankill bomber Sean Kelly in the aftermath the blast 20 years earlier

"Too little, too late."

SDLP MLA John Dallat on apology from Greysteel killer Torrens Knight 20 years after the UFF massacre

"Every day you deal with him is a total joy."

JP McManus on Moneyglass jockey AP McCoy after he rides his 4,000th winner

"There was only one man who gave that order for that woman to be executed – and that man is now the head of Sinn Fein."

Former IRA commander Brendan Hughes, now deceased, in a taped interview on the murder of Disappeared victim Jean McConville

"The most difficult decision of my career."

Belfast's Lord Mayor, Mairtin O Muilleoir, on becoming the first Sinn Fein mayor to attend Armistice Day commemorations

"When going to a circus, best go dressed as a clown."

Flags protestor Jamie Bryson on why he went to court wearing a wig and tape over his mouth on the same day his colleague Willie Frazer turned up as Abu Hamza (above)

"It's not about loyalism. They're gangsters and bullies."

Shankill woman Tracey Coulter on UDA arson attack on her home

"If the UVF had been running this, it would have been better organised."

Shankill Road loyalist on smaller-than-expected turn-out for protest march marking the first anniversary of Belfast councillors' vote to restrict the flying of the Union flag

"He was a true friend to Ireland."

Martin McGuinness on the death of former South African president Nelson Mandela, who invited Northern Ireland politicians to his country for talks about the peace process

"He was an inspirational man and a massive figure in terms of world politics."

Peter Robinson pays tribute to Nelson Mandela

"I am horrified that any member of the Garda Siochana would be involved in colluding with the IRA."

Taoiseach Enda Kenny on conclusions of Smithwick Tribunal that there was collusion in the IRA murders of RUC men Harry Breen and Bob Buchanan

"They had a laissez-faire disregard for their own security."

Gerry Adams provokes fury with comments about Harry Breen and Bob Buchanan and their movements on the day they were murdered after a meeting with Gardai in Dundalk

"There would be steam coming out of my ears."

Peter Robinson on what his reaction would be if proposals from US diplomat Richard Haass on flags, the past and parades were part of a final document

"We are unbowed, unbroken and 100% united in our loyalty to our Queen and to our country."

DUP councillor Ruth Patterson on the withdrawal of charges against her over a Facebook message about a republican march

"The only bombs we want in Belfast are Jager bombs."

Tweet after dissident republican bomb goes off near city-centre restaurants

"He is a dirty murdering scumbag."

Assessment from John Radley, a former Irish Guardsman injured by an IRA blast at Chelsea Barracks in 1981, of the bomber Paul Kavanagh – special adviser to Sinn Fein

"There is more alcohol in a wine gum, or a brandy ball."

Newtownabbey councillor Robert Hill, a member of the normally abstemious DUP, defends taking a sip of the devil's buttermilk at a council meeting

"Our party is of interest to Irish speakers."

Jonathan Rainey, of the new NI21 pro-Union party, explains why they are tweeting in Irish

"I've learned more from you than you have from me."

Pomeroy girl Andrea Begley is told she's an inspiration by her coach, Danny O'Donoghue, after she won The Voice

"A continuation of the protests has no role in changing the bad decision that was taken."

First Minister Peter Robinson calls for an end to street demonstrations over the flags issue

Latest News

Latest Sport

Latest Showbiz