By Anne Cadwallader
BELFAST — Republican sources have dismissed calls from the British Northern Ireland secretary, Peter Mandelson, for the IRA to allow further inspections of its arms dumps by the two independent arms inspectors.
They point to the failure of the British government to fully implement the Patten Report on policing, as promised in the Hillsborough deal on May 5 this year, and to the slow pace of demilitarizing British military installations in the North.
Meanwhile, there has been evidence of an increasing momentum in the dissident republican campaign this week with the discovery of four incendiary devices hidden in clothing in stores in Belfast and in Cookstown and Dungannon, Co. Tyrone.
Also, the ongoing loyalist feud shows no sign of a settlement either, with animosities on the Shankill Road lurking barely beneath the surface.
The wife of the jailed UDA commander, Johnny "Mad Dog" Adair, was removed from the public gallery of the North’s assembly on Monday after disrupting proceedings. The speaker, Lord Alderdice, suspended the first sitting after the summer recess after Gina Adair and two women relatives of a man murdered by the UVF shouted abuse at members of the Progressive Unionist Party.
Never miss an issue of The Irish Echo
Subscribe to one of our great value packages.
The PUP is aligned with the UVF, which is involved a violent feud with the UDA. Adair was rearrested two weeks ago after the feud claimed the lives of three Belfast men. Adair’s wife led a protest outside Downing Street on Saturday.
A five-hour meeting between two PUP members and two UDP members took place last Friday but no statement was issued afterward. There are no plans for a second meeting. Observers believe, however, that it could represent a first step toward settling the feud.