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21/09/2021

MI5: Republican groups blame British intelligence services for release of 'joint statement'

By Eamon Sweeney

The Irish Republican Socialist Movement (IRSM) has refuted any involvement in issuing a joint statement which purported to issue a warning to 'criminal elements' in Co Derry.

Last week the County Derry Post ran a story which said that four republican organisations-Oglaigh na hEireann, INLA, New IRA and the North Derry Republican Group-had warned of 'serious consequences' for those involved in 'criminal activity' and falsely accusing them of involvement in incidents in the county.

Sources close to the INLA have now told the County Derry Post: "The INLA are adamant that they are not in any discussions with any other groups. They see the hidden and sinister hand of British intelligence in relation to todays statement under the name of ONH.

"This comes at a time of a renewed focus and attacks on the Republican socialist movement by the British state and this statement is clearly playing into that narrative."

Similarly, Republican Network for Unity (RNU) also denied that Oglaigh na hEireann had any part in releasing the statement.

In a statement the National Chair of the political party, Eadbhard O Cuinn said: "Republican Network for Unity rebuff claims made by possible British Crown Forces and sinister criminal elements with a sole purpose of slandering the good work currently being done by RNU activists in the Derry area.

"A so called statement bearing a supposed ‘recognised’ code word from ONH and endorsed by RNU, which allegedly carried a severe threat of ‘serious consequences’ to anyone found to be involved in criminal activity was released last week.

"As National Chairperson of RNU I wish to publicly discredit these sources and question there actual motives. Our Ard Comharlie met with independent mediator’s on Wednesday, October 17 and can confirm 100% that no one from ONH issued such a statement or was permission granted by ONH for any individual or group to use the correct protocol required to issue a recognised code word. This therefore leads RNU to believe a sinister attempt is in progress to tarnish the name of Republican Network for Unity and also that of ONH.

"Republican Network for Unity fear that British covert forces may be using criminal elements within the Derry area to portray themselves to media outlets as being Republicans and in doing so tarnishing the good name and good community work being done by Republican Groups."

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