Letter: Peace in Ireland

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The Independent Culture
Sir: Mo Mowlem, the Northern Ireland Secretary, has described the recent killing of alleged IRA informer Charles Bennett as "a clear bid to disfigure the peace process".

Bennett's family seem to think so too as, in a statement issued through their solicitor, they accused "certain political parties" of using his death as a "political football" in order to undermine and destroy the peace process.

The family stressed their support for the peace process and the statement concluded, "It is of note that, whilst using Charles' death in this way, none of the particular parties have offered their condolences or sympathy to the Bennett family."

The main culprits have been the Ulster Unionist Party, particularly through Geoffrey Donaldson and Ian Paisley's DUP, neither renowned for letting the facts get in the way of a good scare story.

In his book Through the Minefield David McKittrick makes the point that out of 55 deaths in the past year, the finger has been pointed at IRA sympathisers on only three occasions, with the remainder attributed to the so-called Real IRA and various loyalists, yet the British public has been conditioned to believe that the IRA cease-fire is regularly flouted.