SINN FÉIN PRESIDENT Gerry Adams has said that groups that are “masquerading as Republican freedom fighters” should “go away” and have no place in society.
He was speaking this morning following the events at the funeral of Real IRA member Alan Ryan in north Dublin over a week ago where a number of shots were fired and a number of mourners dressed in paramilitary-style uniforms.
Three men including Ryan’s brother have subsequently been charged over membership of an illegal organisation and will appear in court again later this week.
Asked about the events at the funeral on Newstalk Breakfast this morning, Adams said: “There is no place for paramilitaries, or paramilitary displays or paramilitary funerals in society. There’s no place for it at all.
“The groups involved should go away. There was a war, thankfully the war has ended.
“These groups are masquerading. I’m mindful a young man was killed, but these groups are masquerading as Republican freedom fighters when indeed they are involved in gangsterism and criminality.”
Speaking before Sinn Féin’s parliamentary party meeting in Dublin today, Adams said that everybody should now support Gardaí and the Police Service of Northern Ireland in “bringing them to book through a proper process of due process”.
When asked if he would act as a go-between for paramilitary groups and the authorities, Adams said that he has offered to do this on a number of occasions in the past but had been turned down.
“So far they have refused to meet with me or with the Sinn Féin leadership,” he added.