The Ulster Unionist Party’s East Antrim candidate, John Stewart, has said that the idea of Jeremy Corbyn becoming Prime Minister of the United Kingdom on 8 June is unthinkable, given the Labour leader’s support for Sinn Fein at the height of the IRA’s terrorist campaign.
John Stewart MLA said:
“The Ulster Unionist Party, particularly since Tom Elliott and Danny Kinahan were elected as MPs has established excellent relationships with all the main parties at Westminster. We have hosted successive Labour Shadow Secretaries of State like Ivan Lewis and Vernon Coaker who have been very well received at our Conferences. However, it must be plainly said: the past associations and behaviour of the current Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn and his shadow Chancellor John McDonnell, make the prospect of a Prime Minister Corbyn unthinkable for anyone who values the Union and supports our army and security forces.
“As a student of history it appalls me how recent history is being re written in a completely untruthful and inaccurate way. The facts are clear and are well documented; Mr Corbyn and Mr McDonnell explicitly supported Sinn Fein in the 1980s and beyond when the terrorist group which it was inextricably linked to - the Provisional IRA- was at the height of a murderous campaign which caused the deaths of thousands of British and Irish citizens.
“What is particularly galling at the moment, is the audacity of the excuses which are being made for him by some of his supporters. Mr Corbyn was not some instrumental figure in the peace process. He was not negotiating terms for peace in the 1980s and 90s. He, along with Mr McDonnell and fringe elements on the far left of the political spectrum, chose to back the Armalite and ballot box strategy of the republican movement against the people and the security forces of the country he now wants to lead.
“He has never distanced himself from what he did, and the explanations for it are risible. For those reasons alone, Jeremy Corbyn is not fit to be Prime Minister of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.”