The Ulster Unionist Party’s Justice Spokesperson, Doug Beattie MC MLA, has responded to comments made by Gerry Adams at the funeral of former IRA leader Kevin McKenna.
Doug Beattie MC MLA said:
“Gerry Adams comments at the funeral of mass murderer Kevin McKenna highlighted perfectly the madness and malevolent hatred that drives physical force republicanism,
“Sinn Fein at Stormont and in the Dail will talk about partnership, rights and respect, and try to tell us that unionists have nothing to fear in any future united Ireland; then in the next breath they gather to venerate one of the most brutal mass-murderers Western Europe has seen since 1945.
“At the funeral of Kevin McKenna, Gerry Adams said the following:
“All children need iconic figures that they can depend upon. Kevin McKenna was very dependable.
“And tell them before they were born that he fought for them and for their future so they will grow old in a free and united Ireland.
“Tell them that granda was in the ‘Ra. Tell them he was a rebel. Tell them he was a freedom fighter.”
“That may well be what Gerry Adams comforts himself with. The rest of the world and anyone with a grasp on reality knows differently.
“He also needs to tell them that Kevin McKenna and the violence he promoted brought nothing but shame on Irish republicanism, and destroyed the prospects of reconciliation, let alone a United Ireland.
“He was a terrorist and a mass murderer. He justified the murder of babies and pensioners – Protestant and Catholic alike - in the pursuit of a goal that his own actions ensured he would never live to see.
“There is another quote from Gerry Adams that should act as a warning to the Government and anyone who thinks that legacy proposals should include some kind of truth commission.
“The part played by republicans like Kevin during the long years of war will never be known. The tale will never be told.”
“Let that quote be the end of any fantasy that republicans will ever engage in a truth process. They demand the truth from others, yet have no intention of providing it themselves. It’s long past time the Government stopped indulging this hypocrisy.”