UUP Accuse O'Neill Of 'Attempting To Justify The Indefensible'

UUP Leader Doug Beattie has accused Sinn Féin's Michelle O'Neill of 'attempting to justify the indefensible' following her comments that "there was no alternative" to IRA violence.

Mr Beattie said: "Michelle O'Neill's comments are an attempt to justify the indefensible. Cold blooded murder is always wrong. No-one needed to die to get to where we are today and there were always alternatives.

"The alternative to violence is dialogue and democracy. John Hume, Seamus Mallon and Joe Hendron understood that. That alternative path existed in the 1970s, but it wasn't enough for the IRA Godfathers. Michelle O'Neill is entitled to her opinion, but she is not entitled to alternative facts.
News Image
"The IRA's terror campaign was an attempt to bludgeon Northern Ireland's law abiding majority into capitulation. It wasn't a war. If it was, some of the leading figures in the republican movement should be in The Hague charged with war crimes. Thousands of people were murdered and tens of thousands were seriously injured because the men of violence sought to impose their will on others. We must also never forget that there are republicans today who excuse their violence with the same lame excuse that current circumstances justify violence.

"The fact that Michelle O'Neill made her comments only days after the 50th anniversaries of the IRA's barbaric attacks in Claudy and Belfast on Bloody Friday, demonstrates a lack of compassion and thought for the families whose loved ones had their lives so cruelly cut short, or the injured who still bear the scars to this day.

"If we as a society are to move forward, the Sinn Fein leadership needs to acknowledge that murder is wrong and unjustifiable. Otherwise another generation will be indoctrinated with the poison from our troubled past."

Related Northern Ireland News Stories
Click here for the latest headlines.

29 July 2022
SDLP Welcomes Move To Introduce Compulsory RSE In Schools
The SDLP has welcomed a move to introduce compulsory relationship and sex education (RSE) in schools. SDLP East Derry MLA Cara Hunter has raised the issue numerous times in recent years and said she believed it would help tackle the issues that young people are experiencing in their relationships.
01 August 2022
Noah Donohoe: Decision To Conceal Information 'Totally Unacceptable'
Secretary of State Shallesh Vara's decision to approve a certificate which will conceal information on the death of Noah Donohoe has been described as "totally unacceptable".
12 December 2019
Pair On CCTV Walking Near Home Of Murdered Bangor Man
Two people have been caught on CCTV walking near the home of murdered Bangor man Michael Kerr. Fresh footage released by the PSNI shows the pair walking along the 68 year-old's home street of Birch Drive at 4.41am on Monday 18 November.
16 July 2013
Unionists 'Must Support Police' - Ford
Justice Minister David Ford has called on unionist MLAs to confirm their support for the police following four consecutive nights of rioting over 12 July parades. "All sides must condemn the recent violence without equivocation. Unionist leaders do not seem to be able to condemn the violence without adding in a 'but' at the end," he said.
29 November 2005
Domestic violence helpline is saving lives – Hanson
Criminal Justice Minister David Hanson has highlighted the success of the 24-hour Domestic Violence Helpline which is celebrating its tenth anniversary.