Category: Archive

News Briefs: U.S. senators want Provos to quit

February 17, 2011

By Staff Reporter

The resolution was introduced by Senator Edward Kennedy and had nine co-sponsors including Democrats Joe Biden, viewed as an early 2008 presidential hopeful, and Chris Dodd and Republicans John McCain and Susan Collins.
The Resolution urges the full decommissioning and complete disbandment of the IRA in keeping with the pledge of all signatories to the agreement to a “total and absolute commitment to exclusively democratic and peaceful means.”
The resolution also called on Sinn Fein to work with the Police Service of Northern Ireland and to cooperate fully in the investigation into the murder of Robert McCartney.
The resolution also urged Ian Paisley’s Democratic Unionist Party to share power with all parties including Sinn Fein, and work in good faith with the institutions created by the agreement in particular the multi-party Executive and cross border North-South bodies.
The resolution further called on the British government to permanently restore the institutions created by the agreement, not least the Northern Ireland Assembly, which was suspended in October 2002.
“All of us are hopeful that a constructive way forward will be found, and the best way to do so is by continuing to implement the Good Friday agreement,” Kennedy said in a statement.

A Belfast-born pilot is suing the U.S. over what he believes is a case of mistaken identity — but one that is preventing him from flying bigger planes.
Robert William Gray, 34, has lived in the U.S. since 1993 and has flown small commercial planes since 1997, according to an Associated Press Report.
Gray claims that a government document describes him as Hispanic, so presumably they must be referring to someone else.
The report quoted a spokesman for Gray’s employer, Cape Air, as saying that
Gray was “as Irish as St. Patrick.”
Since last October, the Transportation Security Administration has been scrutinizing all non-U.S. citizens seeking flight training for aircraft weighing more than 12,500 pounds.
Gray applied to train for bigger planes but the TSA turned him down on the grounds that he was a threat to national security.
Gray has field a suit in a Boston court against the agency and the Department of Homeland Security.
The Boston Herald reported that Gray has occasionally piloted prominent Massachusetts politicians including Senator Edward Kennedy.
Kennedy is certain to sympathize with Gray. Despite his public prominence he has been delayed at U.S. airports several times in recent years because another Edward Kennedy came up on computers containing the U.S. Government’s so-called no fly list.

A 25-year-old Co. Tyrone man is facing a potential fifteen year jail term after being charged with second degree manslaughter for fatally striking a woman on a Yonkers street.
Westchester County District Attorney Jeanine Pirro announced an eleven-count indictment against Christopher Kiernan who is being held on $500,000 bail in Westchester County Jail.
A guilty verdict on the manslaughter count potentially carries the fifteen-year term in state prison.
Kiernan, an undocumented immigrant and Yonkers resident who does not possess a valid driving license, is accused of killing mother-of-three Carlene Joseph.
He was driving a sport utility vehicle on the evening of Monday, June 20, when he collided with Joseph and her husband, Emanual. The couple was walking home after shopping.
A statement from Pirro’s office said that a test of Kiernan’s blood revealed that he had 0.23 of one percent by weight of alcohol in his blood, or five times the legal state limit.

Members of the Ancient Order of Hibernians around the U.S. are mourning the loss of Dr. Ken O’Connor, a County Galway native who died in a recent plane crash in Alaska.
O’Connor, an anesthesiologist, and two friends died in the crash off the Alaska coastline.
O’Connor, who was from Tuam, had been a member of the St. Columba Division in Columbia, South Carolina.
“He will be missed by all of us that had the pleasure to have met Ken. Ken was 77 years old and he lived a very full life,” Joseph Dougherty, South Carolina AOH state president, said in a statement.

Irish citizens living in the U.S. will no longer have to pay to renew their Irish passports — if they are over 65.
Irish foreign affairs minister Dermot Ahern announced the free passports for seniors scheme that will come into effect on Aug. 1.
“It is important to stress that this move also applies to our senior citizens in Northern Ireland and to those senior citizens who emigrated from Ireland and are today living abroad,” Ahern said.
Roughly 650,000 Irish passports will be issued this year. Senior citizens account for approximately 10 percent of this total.

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