The news today that dissident republican terrorists have seriously injured a police officer in Northern Ireland underlines the fragility of the political process in the province. With first minister Peter Robinson's position called into question over the allegations that his wife took £50,000 from property developers and that he failed to inform the authorities about it, this latest terror attack merely adds to fears that the power-sharing arrangement is in deep trouble. Even before today's booby-trap bomb attack and the crisis surrounding the Robinson family, the political process was locked in stalemate. The Democratic Unionist party under Peter Robinson has been resisting Sinn Féin demands that policing and justice powers be transferred from Westminster to the Northern Ireland Assembly. The DUP argues that it cannot agree until there is full confidence within the unionist community on the issue. Tomorrow Sinn Féin's national executive will meet at its headquarters in … [Read more...] about What now for Northern Ireland’s peace process?
Abortions northern ireland
Dissident republican terrorists have seriously injured a Catholic police officer in a booby trap bomb attack in Northern Ireland. The policeman is fighting for his life after a device exploded underneath his car on the Milltown Road in the Randalstown area of County Antrim shortly after 6.30am. A spokeswoman for the Police Service of Northern Ireland said the officer had been driving the car for about a mile before the bomb exploded. The incident occurred on the outskirts of the town just a few miles from Antrim town, where in March last year the Real IRA shot dead two soldiers outside Massereene Barracks. The PSNI spokeswoman confirmed that the victim's condition was "serious". Local MP the Rev William McCrea said he was convinced dissident republicans opposed to the peace process were behind this morning's attack. The Alliance party assembly member for the area, David Ford, condemned this latest attempt to murder police officers. Ford said: "I am appalled at this murderous attack. … [Read more...] about Northern Ireland policeman fighting for life after car bomb explosion
Earning extra money for doing very little - sounds great, doesn't it?The catch? Let a large sum of money pass through your bank account and don't ask any questions about where it came from or where it's going to.Now you're probably having second thoughts about signing up.This is the world of so-called money mules, which one Belfast judge has described as a developing "cottage industry" enabling organised gangs to launder the proceeds of their crimes.In separate cases this week, two women aged in their 30s from Belfast were in the dock at the city's crown court for their roles in organised bank fraud after making their "clean" accounts available to criminals to deposit sums of up to £10,000.The money in one of the cases had been traced back to a bank fraud in January last year in which the victim had £47,000 stolen from their account.Neither woman had a criminal background - the judge described one as "intelligent... [and] capable of having a 17-year work history and two … [Read more...] about ‘Money mules’: The ‘cottage industry’ targeting the vulnerable
Northern Ireland's first minister, Peter Robinson, was fighting for his politcal life tonight over claims that he failed to inform the authorities about a £50,000 loan his wife passed on to her then 19-year-old boyfriend. Robinson said he had agreed to an independent inquiry into his actions by a QC appointed by Stormont after calls from within the power sharing coalition for him to consider his position. In a statement tonight he said he would fight "smears" against his personal integrity, adding that he had been "tried in the media and the press". Castlereagh borough council, which granted Iris Robinson's lover permission to open a riverside cafe, confirmed yesterday that it was launching an inquiry into her role in enabling Kirk McCambley to open the Lock Keepers Inn on the southern edge of Belfast. The main allegations against the Robinsons include: • That Iris Robinson gained £50,000 for McCambley from two major property developers, Ken Campbell and Fred Fraser. … [Read more...] about Peter Robinson fights for political life over wife’s £50,000 loan
The prime minister's frankest admission yet that the state colluded in the 1989 murder of the Belfast lawyer Pat Finucane has failed to quell demands from his family, human rights organisations and the Irish government for a full public inquiry. Fresh revelations on Wednesday – about special branch's repeated failure to warn Finucane that his life was under threat, the RUC's "obstruction" of justice, and MI5's "propaganda initiatives" that identified the lawyer with republican paramilitaries who were his clients – only reinforced calls for a more thorough investigation. David Cameron's apology to Finucane's family in the Commons followed publication of a scathing report by the former war crimes lawyer Sir Desmond de Silva QC that cleared ministers but blamed "agents of the state" for the killing. The prime minister acknowledged there had been "shocking levels of collusion" in what was one of the most controversial killings of the Troubles. The extent of the co-operation … [Read more...] about David Cameron admits ‘shocking levels of collusion’ in Pat Finucane murder