Sinn Féin President Gerry Adams TD has criticised remarks by the former Chairman of the British Conservative Party, Norman Tebbit, in which he said he hoped a dissident republican group would shoot the North’s Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness.
Mr Adams said: “I fully understand that Norman Tebbit has himself been a victim of the political conflict and I regret that he has suffered grievously. However, to publicly advocate the assassination of Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness is a shocking throwback to a violent past from which we are seeking to move on. The State visit is another important milestone in doing that.
“The remarks by Mr Tebbit are another clear example of why the issue of the past needs to be dealt with as a political priority. Martin McGuinness is a leader of political and personal courage who has worked tirelessly to ensure the success of the Peace Process and the cause of reconciliation between unionist and nationalist and between Britain and Ireland, at considerable risk to himself.
“Martin, his home and indeed his family have been targets for abuse and attack by so-called ‘dissident republicans’. To now have this type of activity encouraged by a member of the British House of Lords is unacceptable, and should be rejected by all right thinking people.
“Political leaders on both sides of the Irish Sea should reject the sentiments expressed by Mr Tebbit.”