"DUP Presses Adams Over Wanted Brother".

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"DUP Presses Adams Over Wanted Brother".

Post by 1916 on Thu Jan 14, 2010 5:14 pm

http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/8eed0554-0161-11df-8c54-00144feabdc0.html

Gordon Brown, the prime minister, and Brian Cowen, his Irish counterpart, on Thursday urged Northern Ireland parties to agree a timetable to take over responsibility for policing, as the Democratic Unionists raised fresh questions about Sinn Féin’s commitment to co-operating with criminal investigations.

Ian Paisley junior, DUP assembly member, on Thursday said he had asked the assembly’s ombudsman to consider whether Gerry Adams, the Sinn Féin leader, had behaved appropriately in the investigation of his brother Liam over child sex abuse charges. The Police Service of Northern Ireland issued an arrest warrant for Liam Adams in November 2008.

The Sinn Féin leader also said when he learnt of the accusations he “moved very quickly to get him dumped out of Sinn Féin”.

However, there is confusion over when he informed the police and other relevant authorities and at what stage his brother, a one-time chairman of a local Sinn Féin branch, was expelled from the party.

Mr Paisley said he had sought a ruling from the assembly ombudsman on whether Mr Adams’ behaviour “was appropriate as a member of the assembly”.

Tom Frawley, the ombudsman, will have to decide whether the matter merits consideration by the assembly’s committee on standards and privileges.

Arthur Morgan, Sinn Féin deputy in the Irish parliament, confirmed that Liam Adams had been chairman of his local party in County Louth in 1997, but the party president had not informed him of any allegations.

Sinn Féin has also confirmed that Liam Adams worked as a youth worker in the County Louth area at that time. From late 2004 to summer 2006 he was also youth development officer at a community project in west Belfast in the heart of the Sinn Féin leader’s Westminster constituency.

The DUP is clearly attempting to deflect attention from sleaze allegations facing leader Peter Robinson, following embarrassing revelations last week about Iris, his MP wife. She is alleged to have solicited £50,000 from two local developers to help her teenage lover set up in business.

A BBC documentary alleged that Mrs Robinson, also an MP, had not declared the payment in the register of members’ interests at Westminster and that Mr Robinson had failed to inform the authorities when he learnt of it.

On Monday, Mr Robinson announced he was stepping aside temporarily as first minister to clear his name. The British and Irish governments fear the crisis in the DUP leadership will further delay the move to devolve policing powers.

In a joint statement after meeting at Downing Street the two prime ministers said it would be the “best response” to the campaign of violence by dissident republican groups opposed to the peace process.
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