Thursday, 6 December 2012

Political persecution continues in the North

The arrest and detention without bail of prominent Eirigi member Stephen Murney in Newry on bogus terror charges last week is part of a continuous campaign waged by the status-quo and its armed wing against growing dissent in Northern Ireland.

The local spokesperson of the party has been particular active in highlighting and campaigning against PSNI harassment was charged under Section 58 of the Terrorism Act 2000, to collect or possess information of a kind likely to be of use to a person committing or preparing an act of terrorism.
In a statement released on the group’s website, Eirigi have pointed out the ridiculous nature of the charges.

“Two of the charges against him directly relate to these activities – the same type of activities which the British government promotes and encourages dissenting communities in certain other states to engage in.

“The third charge also is directly related to Stephen’s work as a party member. His solicitor has been informed that among the items which the PSNI claim may be “likely to be of use to terrorists” are éirígí posters, leaflets and literature of which many thousands of copies have been distributed throughout communities across the north, along with stencils which party members make use of.”

Mac Cionnaith then stated, “These spurious charges that have been laid against Stephen Murney are charges which could be pressed against any political activist, any human rights activist, or any photo-journalist, in the Six Counties.

“These charges are a blatant but crude attempt at political censorship and the open suppression of legitimately-held political opinions. In that regard they are akin to the type of charges brought by RUC against political activists and others under the old Special Powers Act between 1922 and 1972.
“Other items which the PSNI are using to justify these charges include uniforms belonging to a band of which Stephen was a member quite a number of years ago and an item belonging to his son.”
The fact that the PSNI in court have also justified his arrest on the basis of alleged pictures of police officers on his Facebook page which were taken during a political demonstration is evident of sinister motive to send a message to anyone who exposes police harassment and human rights abuses in the North.

While we have our clear differences with Irish republicanism and Eirigi, the WSM is aware that this latest arrest is an attack on everyone fighting for social change. We recognise that the police’s first line of duty will always been to defend the status-quo and the interests of the ruling class.

As the party’s general secretary, Breandán Mac Cionnaith stated , “These spurious charges that have been laid against Stephen Murney are charges which could be pressed against any political activist, any human rights activist, or any photo-journalist, in the Six Counties.

Workers Solidarity Movement