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An unknown member of the Official IRA, on guard at a sand-bagged gun emplacement in the Bogside area of Derry, pictured here in 1972. PA Archive/Press Association Images
Kieran Conway

Former IRA officer: 'Gardaí colluded with us during the Troubles'

The IRA’s former head of intelligence has made the claims in a new book.

A FORMER IRA intelligence officer has claimed that some members of the Irish Government and An Garda Síochána colluded with the paramilitary organisation.

Speaking to the Guardian, Kieran Conway said that on one occasion, leading members of the IRA were able to escape before a raid by gardaí following an alleged tip-off from Special Branch.

He has detailed his journey from upper middle-class Dublin to the Republican movement in a new book, Southside Provisional: From Freedom Fighter to The Four Courts.

“I think that the army council had particular contacts with those in the security area which weren’t even shared with me,” Conway said.

We had contacts in the law offices of the state and contacts in the upper echelons of the guards.

He described this alleged collusion as “widespread”.

However, he refused to be drawn on what members of the Irish Government helped the IRA:

I really would not want to say. Wild horses wouldn’t drag me to the names of any of those in the establishment who helped us.

Conway told the Guardian that he left the Republican movement following the Downing Street declaration in 1993, and described it as a ‘complete and utter defeat’.

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