Sinn Fein Official Issues Warning on Peace Process During BC Event

Sinn Fein Official Issues Warning on Peace Process During BC Event

Once again, Boston College served as an unexpected setting for controversy in Irish politics.

Speaking at the "Building Bridges: Educational Policy in Divided Societies" symposium [see separate story], Northern Ireland Minister for Education Martin McGuinness briefly touched on the troubled Northern Irish peace process. He warned that Northern Ireland First Minister David Trimble would aggravate the political crisis if he banned the Sinn Fein party from attending a cross-border meeting scheduled for late November.

"All of us in political leadership have a duty to prevent this happening, to defend the Good Friday Agreement and to promote inclusion and equality," said McGuinness, a member of Sinn Fein. "That is the imperative facing the Unionist leadership and the British Government."

McGuinness' remarks were reported in the Boston Herald as well as by European wire services.

BC was the backdrop for another Irish political flap earlier this fall, when during a Connolly House reception the Minister for Arts and Heritage Sile de Valera expressed concerns about Ireland's involvement in the European Union. Her statements, which appeared at odds with government policy, were widely reported by Irish media.

-Sean Smith


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