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Former Workers' Party president Sean Garland dies aged 84

The former IRA member passed away at his home in Meath after a long illness yesterday.

Sean Garland, lifelong republican and socialist and leading member of the Workers Party.
Sean Garland, lifelong republican and socialist and leading member of the Workers Party.
Image: Rollingnews.ie

THE FORMER PRESIDENT of the Workers’ Party Sean Garland has died at the age of 84.

The party confirmed his death yesterday, with RTÉ reporting that he passed away at his home in Meath after a long illness.

Garland joined the IRA in the 1950s and was involved in a number of operations during the border campaign.

He was infamously involved in an attack on an RUC Barracks in Brookeborough in Co Fermanagh, which led to the deaths of fellow IRA members Sean South and Fergal O’Hanlon.

In 2005, he was arrested in Northern Ireland on foot of a US extradition warrant, after the US Secret Service accused him of laundering counterfeit dollar bills during the 1990s.

He fled to Dublin and was arrested there in 2009, but successfully fought his extradition to the United States.

In a statement, the Worker’s Party paid tribute to Garland as one of those who “most influenced and shaped” the party over several decades.

Party president Michael Donnelly called him “a unique and charismatic individual whose contribution to Irish political life cannot be overestimated”.

“His legacy and his influence will endure in the class politics which he espoused and in the generations of working people at home and abroad that he has influenced and inspired,” Donnelly said.

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