IRA takes hard line on arms decommissioning
and DAVID McKITTRICK
The IRA last night appeared to reject outright the proposed international commission to supervise taking paramilitary weapons out of circulation.
It took the unusual step of issuing a second statement to clarify its position after strong British pressure to launch the idea of a commission with the former US senator George Mitchell as a likely chairman. The IRA said it would not disarm "in any circumstances".
It accused the British government of using Unionist intransigence as an excuse for its refusal to move. A spokesman earlier referred to "other diversions". Last night this was clarified as a reference to British pressure that the IRA begin decommissioning its arsenal as a matter of priority.
However, pressure on the IRA has been increased by the fact that political representatives of the loyalist paramilitaries have indicated their willingness to co-operate with the proposed decommissioning body.
t A new element of uncertainty was introduced in the contest for the leadership of the Ulster Unionist Party yesterday when a fifth candidate, the Upper Bann MP David Trimble, entered the race.
Mr Trimble, who has been an MP for only five years, has long had a reputation as a hardliner. He strengthened this in July when he took a leading role in a loyalist confrontation with the RUC in Portadown.
The significance of his entry is that he can be expected to draw support from the same quarters as the Strangford MP John Taylor, who is regarded as the front-runner to succeed James Molyneaux.
Woolwich terror attack: Suspect Michael Adebowale saw friend 'literally sliced to pieces' in 2008
Emergency landing at Heathrow sparks further controversy over London airport capacity
Unrest may spread across Europe, warns Red Cross chief
EDL marches on Newcastle as attacks on Muslims increase tenfold in the wake of Woolwich machete attack which killed Drummer Lee Rigby
You want to get an Eton scholarship? All you need to do is answer four (not so simple) questions
- 1 What, let gays get married? We must be bonkers
- 2 Rocky Horror star Tim Curry 'suffers major stroke'
- 3 Exclusive: How MI5 blackmails British Muslims
- 4 EDL marches on Newcastle as attacks on Muslims increase tenfold in the wake of Woolwich machete attack which killed Drummer Lee Rigby
- 5 Farewell, Shameless. Your heirs have work to do
BMF is the UK’s biggest and best loved outdoor fitness classes
Find out what The Independent's resident travel expert has to say about one of the most beautiful small cities in the world
Nook is donating eReaders to volunteers at high-need schools and participating in exclusive events throughout the campaign.
Get the latest on The Evening Standard's campaign to get London's children reading.
Win anything from gadgets to five-star holidays on our competitions and offers page.