04/05/2014 Sunday Politics Northern Ireland


04/05/2014

The latest political news, interviews and debate in Northern Ireland.


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Morning, folks. Welcome to the Sunday Politics. Walls are being

:00:37.:00:41.

re-painted in Belfast as Gerry Adams begins his fourth day in police

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custody in connection with one of the most brutal and shocking murders

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of the Troubles. That's our top story.

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He may have got egg on his face this week but Nigel Farage is a serious

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electoral threat in this month's elections. I'll ask the Conservative

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Party Chairman Grant Shapps how worried he is.

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And we're on the trail of Nick Clegg. You were voted the best

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looking party leader and the most likely to be a good

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And in Northern Ireland: As the deadline for police to charge or

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release Gerry Adams gets closer, we deadline for police to charge or

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talk to the five Executive parties about the possible impact on

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Stormont and policing. and independence. We have a table

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full of Euro candidates here to debate what it means for London.

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And with me, as always, the best and the brightest political panel in the

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business - Nick Watt, Helen Lewis and Janan Ganesh. They'll be

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throwing metaphorical rotten eggs into the twittersphere.

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First this morning - Gerry Adams, President of Sinn Fein, has spent a

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fourth night in police custody after he was arrested in connection with

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the killing of Jean McConville more than 40 years ago. Sinn Fein has

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claimed that the arrest is politically motivated coming, as it

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does, during local and European election campaigns. Northern

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Ireland's deputy first minister, Martin McGuinness, has indicated he

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might review the party's support for policing in the province if Gerry

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Adams is charged. The Jean McConville murder was one of the

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most notorious cases of the Troubles.

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The widowed mother of ten was kidnapped from her home in December

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1972, never to be seen alive again. The IRA denied involvement but in

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1999 admitted it had murdered her and several others, known as the

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Disappeared. Before his death, the former IRA commander Brendan Hughes

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pointed the finger at Gerry Adams, claiming:

:02:48.:02:55.

In April this year, either Bell was charged with aiding and abetting the

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murder. -- Ivor Bell. Gerry Adams has always insisted he is innocent

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of any part in the abduction and killing all burial of Mrs

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McConville. We were hoping to speak to the

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Northern Ireland Secretary, Theresa Villiers, but having agreed to do an

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interview with us this morning, she pulled out. But we are joined from

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Belfast by Sinn Fein's Alex Maskey. Welcome to the Sunday Politics. And

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the police just doing their job by questioning Gerry Adams? Gerry Adams

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said publicly some time ago that he was available to speak to the

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police, but that is not what this is about at the moment, because what we

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have here is clearly evidence in our mind of political interference in

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what should be due process. Gerry Adams made it clear some time ago he

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wanted to speak to the police, it was available at any time, and yet

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that request was not taken up until three weeks into an election and we

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believe that was deliberately orchestrated by a small number of

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people. What evidence can you present this morning that proves

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that claim? The direct circumstances Gerry Adams finds himself in at the

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moment, take that in stark contrast when they have dealt with members of

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the British Army for instance... That is just circumstantial. The

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PSNI know that the soldiers involved in that and a number of other

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high-profile killings of citizens here, and not one of those people

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has been arrested. In fact any of the people who were interviewed were

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interviewed by request. There was a stark contrast, in terms of how they

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have dealt with the British military involving state killings. We haven't

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got too much time. Sinn Fein said it would review its support for the

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PSNI if Gerry Adams is charged. That sounds like political interference

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in the police process. It's not because we have a clear mandate from

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the people who elect us. Policing has been an important part of the

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peace process here for many years, Sinn Fein plays an important role in

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local policing partnerships. We negotiate to make sure we have

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powers transferred here to elected representatives in the north. It is

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a long way to go before we have policing highly accountable, and

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making sure they deliver a very impartial service. How will he react

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if Gerry Adams is charged? I am still trying to get a clear answer.

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If Gerry Adams is charged, will you withdraw support for the Northern

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Ireland police service? We view this as a serious situation and a serious

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ongoing situation and we will monitor how this pans out. We have a

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very important role to play to support the police service here. We

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have done consistently, worked with them on a daily basis, but we will

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not accept political interference by a small number of people in the

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police who are undermining the police. We will not accept political

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policing. If there was evidence, and I emphasise the word if, because we

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have seen none, but if there were evidence to justify Gerry Adams

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being charged, why should he not be charged? It is my understanding from

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the family of Gerry Adams that there has not been a single shred of

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evidence put forward. I understand that, but if there was evidence, why

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should he not be charged? You put that caveat yourself and then you

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expect me to speculate, there is no way I will do that. The fact of the

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matter is there hasn't been one single shred of evidence put to

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Gerry Adams in the last few days, in fact what has been put to him is a

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range of issues of newspaper cuttings, books, statements made

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from people, including from people who didn't want their statements

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released until they have died. who didn't want their statements

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was charged, again I emphasise the word if, does the police process

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fall apart? The police process is a fragile entity, it requires work and

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we have been saying this publicly and privately with the Irish and

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British and privately with the Irish and

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process has to be nurtured and developed. We are not out of the

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woods yet. From a Republican point of view we have been working flat

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out. I just wanted a quick answer to my question, is a yes or no? What

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question I asking me? Is the peace process in jeopardy? It is fragile

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and I am not going to have words put into my mouth but I don't want to

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use. It has to be worked out and nurtured. Thank you for joining us.

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Nick Watt, you were a Northern Ireland correspondent like myself in

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days gone by. Where is this going to go? It shows how challenging the

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peace process is because on the one hand you have the unspeakable pain

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of the McConville family, but you also have the danger of not having

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mechanisms to deal with the past. South Africa is a good example, you

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have to have some mechanism to deal with the past because if you don't,

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you are going to have, as Sinn Fein have now, someone in a police cell

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but you don't have the arrests of the Bloody Sunday soldiers.

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Paramilitary prisoners were released after two years... We have seen no

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action against somebody accused of the Hyde Park bombings, it is not a

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one-way street. We have the decommissioning of IRA weapons by

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the IRA, therefore destroying crucial evidence. You have these

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inconsistencies because you don't have an mechanism for dealing with

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the past, but doing that is really difficult because of the pain of

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real people. Don't you get a feeling that here in London they are hoping

:10:36.:10:40.

he will not be charged? Definitely because it would be nice if

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everything went away, but the civil case of the family is taken out of

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the hands of the police. You can see here a real failure in Westminster

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to see this as anything other than settled. David Cameron we know sees

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himself as a chairman. I was speaking to a friend in Northern

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Ireland who said he has never met Gerry Adams and I think this is very

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revealing. They consider this as a settled issue that will not trouble

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Westminster again. It would be, but the relatives of the disappeared

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don't want it to be settled. This points to the reality that the

:11:25.:11:27.

Belfast agreement probably had to be done, but the moral price at which

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it was purchased was far greater than we were willing to admit during

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the euphoria. For a country that prides itself by the rule of law to

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tolerate the early release of prisoners and former pal and

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military -- paramilitaries, I think was a very serious matter. As for

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the PSNI, it only exists because its predecessor failed to command the

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confidence of the nationalist community. It is a very big deal if

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even the PSNI ends up falling into the same trap. We have to is leave

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it there I'm afraid. It was the Conservative's local election

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campaign launch on Friday, and what did David Cameron focus on? Burning

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local issues like the state of our roads, rubbish collection or care of

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the elderly? No. It was Europe. The Prime Minister re-iterated again his

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promise of an in-out referendum on our membership of the EU in 2017.

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And it's being reported this morning that he will share a platform with

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Nigel Farage in a pre-general election debate. Here's what the

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UKIP leader had to say about the issue when he was on the Marr Show

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this morning with Ed Miliband. David Cameron very often makes these vague

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promises, then doesn't deliver afterwards. I don't think he has any

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intention of allowing me into any of these debates. Perhaps Ed Miliband

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wants to debate? We have got to have the TV debates as we did join the

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last general election. I think David Cameron is doing everything he can

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to wriggle out of them. It is up to the broadcasters but whether they

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invite Nigel. My main desire is that the debates go ahead. We are joined

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now by Grant Shapps. Will he be included? The debates were not

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without problems, they took place during the campaign period and

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disrupted the flow of the campaign, taking it out of the regions, people

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getting to speak to the leaders so a longer period for that would be

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helpful. I think they are good idea and they should go ahead, but all of

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the negotiation about who is involved is yet to happen. So it is

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not a done deal that Nigel Farage will be included? That needs to be

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negotiated with the TV companies. The Conservatives believe we should

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have debates, but exactly the format and the timing, all of the -- that

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will be debated in the autumn, but first we have European elections,

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the Queen 's speech and a Scottish referendum. The local election

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campaign was launched on Friday. Why did you talk more about Europe than

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local councils? Both are important. The local elections are critically

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important for people, their local services. It is easy to forget, for

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example, that the council tax has been largely frozen since this

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Government came to power, a big contrast to Dublin under the

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previous Labour government. So why did you go on and on about Europe?

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Let me show you the poster used to launch your local election campaign.

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There it is, and in-out referendum on Europe, the day of the local

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elections, where is the word local? Is it in small print? I hear what

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you're saying, I am happy to be here to talk about the local elections.

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But you are right, they are on the same day, and not many people know

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that only by voting conservative can you get an in-out referendum. --

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Conservative. UKIP cannot deliver, we can, it is the same date, so

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people... This was the launch of the local election campaign. Why does

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the Prime Minister have to keep on promising something he has already

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promised? The actual referendum would be in 2017. He promised it

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before, he keeps repeating it because he knows people don't really

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trust him. I think it is a question of the fact that, actually, unless

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you remind people that the pledges there, that the only way to get an

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in-out referendum is to vote for it, this is a critical moment at

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which we need people to vote for that referendum if they want it. It

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is not the case, as I saw this morning, being said by Nigel Farage,

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that a referendum was promised before and not delivered. There was

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no referendum in the last manifesto. There will be in the next one. There

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was a cast-iron guarantee, in the Sun in 2006. Let's just clear that

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up... Once the Lisbon Treaty... In the Sun article, he said, we will

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have a referendum on the Lisbon Treaty. Clearly, because that treaty

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had been passed before the general election, it is difficult to have a

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referendum on something in the past. We joined Europe in the 1970s,

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having a referendum on that! Look, that is about the future. Our

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relationship with Europe is absolutely critical. Most people in

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this country feel, I was not old enough to vote in that referendum,

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most of those who voted, they voted for a Common Market, that is not

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what we have got. We want to continue the work we have been doing

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in the EU Budget, what did UKIP do? They voted against it. We want more

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of those powers brought home, and we will put it to a referendum, and

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people will have to vote Conservative to get it. We have been

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looking at new research, almost two thirds of Conservative members are

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considering voting for UKIP, almost two thirds. I have a simple message

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here, which is this. If you vote for UKIP... Can we have it up? 30% are

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likely, 30% are possible. That is why it is important we are making

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these arguments. If you vote for UKIP, you are voting to take us

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further away from returning powers to this country, further from a

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referendum. It is support for Ed Miliband becoming Prime Minister,

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and he will do exactly what Labour have always done - hand away powers,

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and away the rebate for nothing in return, giving Europe even more so

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over the day-to-day affairs in Britain. Why are so many people

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considering voting UKIP? It is to hold your feet to the fire, they do

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not trust you on a referendum, so they will vote UKIP to force you to

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tap in your line. We have a very tough line. If I had said four years

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ago that this government would manage to cut the overall EU

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budget, would take us out of the bailout fund that Labour got us

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into, passing a law that no more powers can go to Europe without a

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referendum, if I had said that, people would say, I do not believe

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it will happen. Not only have we done these things, we are promising

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and in-out referendum, and the only way to get it is to vote

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Conservative. Nigel Farage has said, we can't change anything in

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Europe, and it is no wonder that the president of the European Commission

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has said, we love having these UKIP MEPs, because they don't turn up and

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vote, apart from when they vote against the cut in the budget. It

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goes beyond UKIP in your party, because this research also showed

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that those Conservative members most likely to vote for UKIP, they said

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they do not feel valued or respected by their own leadership, and they

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regard David Cameron as ideological eat more remote from them than UKIP.

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What I would say is look at that list... Let me take that step

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further. What people need our series solutions to serious problems. When

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people vote for a UKIP MEP, I will say, which one of the 40% of the

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MEPs who got in for UKIP last time are you voting for, the ones above

:20:24.:20:28.

left or defected, the ones have gone to jail? 40% have ended up not

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delivering. People have a right to know what to expect when they vote

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in these elections. They can look at our record at home, and this goes to

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the point you have raised about what we have done in Britain to get this

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economy back on track, recover from Labour's recession. We are prepared

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to take those decisions in Europe as well. Presumably, active

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Conservative members, they know that, so why do they not feel valued

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by the leadership? I spend time going up and down the country

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meeting Conservative members, and they are on the doorstep, last

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weekend 150 out in Enfield campaigning for the European and

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local elections... Why are they keen on UKIP? When I meet somebody who

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says that, not necessarily a member... Have you met members of

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say they will vote UKIP? No, but a vote for UKIP is... Do not do it,

:21:32.:21:40.

you will end up with Labour having more control, handing away powers to

:21:41.:21:45.

Europe. 51-year-old meeting members who say they will vote UKIP, you

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must be out of touch. -- if you are not meeting members. Some of your

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members are thinking of voting UKIP. I spend huge amount of time

:21:57.:22:01.

travelling around, I just told you about this action day in Enfield,

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where we had an enormous turnout. Those members were on the doorsteps

:22:07.:22:11.

pointing out that you can only get reform in Europe by voting

:22:12.:22:16.

Conservative. Labour and the Lib Dems will not deliver, UKIP can't,

:22:17.:22:21.

Conservatives will. You have not got that message across, because a

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YouGov poll shows, on Europe, who has the best policies? Tories 18%,

:22:26.:22:34.

Labour 19%, UKIP 27%. On the economy, Tories 27%, Labour 23, UKIP

:22:35.:22:40.

4. Why don't you shut up about Europe and talk about the economy?

:22:41.:22:47.

Look, on the 27th of May, we have European elections, as well as local

:22:48.:22:51.

elections. If I don't talk about the European elections, you would say

:22:52.:22:54.

what you said at the beginning about not talking about the local

:22:55.:22:57.

elections! These are serious elections, and the point I am tried

:22:58.:23:01.

to make is that the issues at stake are not peripheral, they are not

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unimportant. Our MEPs have been battling to cut red tape from a

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European level on small businesses, the same thing this government has

:23:11.:23:12.

been doing for small businesses domestic league, where for example

:23:13.:23:15.

every small business owner watching this show knows they have got ?2000

:23:16.:23:22.

back in employment announced on national insurance contributions. We

:23:23.:23:25.

are doing it at home, we are doing it in Europe, and it is important to

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tie that together. Ireland that Mr Cameron saying, you should stop

:23:31.:23:44.

banging on about Europe... -- I remember. This is before the last

:23:45.:23:54.

general election, as in days for the Lib Dems, 18%. Even then, you didn't

:23:55.:23:59.

win the election, and now you are only three or four points ahead, it

:24:00.:24:04.

doesn't look good for you, does it? Even then, the poll did not turn out

:24:05.:24:10.

to be what it was on the day. No, that is what happens, that is the

:24:11.:24:14.

voting intentions now! You are in a worse position than a year before

:24:15.:24:17.

the last election, which you didn't win. We are almost proving the point

:24:18.:24:24.

that you can take a clip at any moment in time, not sounding like a

:24:25.:24:28.

politician, but the only poll that matters is on the day. In just over

:24:29.:24:34.

a year's time, people will have a completely different picture to look

:24:35.:24:39.

at than these opinion polls. We have an economy from being a basket

:24:40.:24:44.

case, the great Labour recession knocking 7% of this economy, hurting

:24:45.:24:49.

every family, to a point where we the fastest-growing economy in the

:24:50.:24:53.

developed world. In a year's time, I hope people will see that we are the

:24:54.:24:57.

people who've taken the difficult decisions, got the economy to the

:24:58.:25:01.

right place, more security for you and your family. Do not give the car

:25:02.:25:05.

keys back to the people who crashed it in the first place. If I had a

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pound for every time I have heard that! It is clearly not getting

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through. On the Pfizer attempted of AstraZeneca, Mr Miliband called this

:25:15.:25:22.

morning for a tougher public interest test such big takeovers. Do

:25:23.:25:26.

you agree with that or not? Let me be absolutely clear, if there is any

:25:27.:25:33.

kind of joining, we are in favour of British jobs,

:25:34.:25:44.

kind of joining, we are in favour of -- R But what Mr Mallon and wants

:25:45.:25:45.

to do with rent caps, he is to do with rent caps, he is

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wants to take us back to the bad old those. -- bad old days. Should there

:25:59.:26:10.

be a bigger public interest test? We have seen some takeovers that people

:26:11.:26:13.

have criticised, but others, like Bentley, Land Rover, which have been

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very successful. Should there be a tougher test?! We will have tests

:26:21.:26:25.

that ensured this get-together becomes a great Anglo-American

:26:26.:26:29.

project, or it doesn't happen, but the Miliband approach is simply to

:26:30.:26:33.

be anti-business, anti-jobs and anti-job security. Grant Shapps,

:26:34.:26:37.

thank you. A challenging week for the Liberal

:26:38.:26:40.

Democrats with a local election campaign overshadowed by another row

:26:41.:26:45.

with the Conservatives about knife crime. Adam has spent the day with

:26:46.:26:51.

Nick Clegg on the campaign trail. How nice! Nick Clegg is taking me on

:26:52.:26:55.

a political mini break to the Cotswolds. Yes, we are getting the

:26:56.:26:59.

train. He wants to highlight what his party is doing in local

:27:00.:27:03.

government, and a personal passion of his in Europe. Graham Watson,

:27:04.:27:07.

government, and a personal passion Lib Dem MEP for the south-west, has

:27:08.:27:11.

been running a campaign to have prunes recognised as a laxative. Is

:27:12.:27:16.

that Lib Dems battling for Britain in Europe? It is not our front page

:27:17.:27:21.

manifesto commitment! It is one of many things that Graham does, he

:27:22.:27:26.

does many other things. In fact, he is a good example of an MEP who took

:27:27.:27:33.

a pioneering role, for instance, in making sure... There is the proven

:27:34.:27:37.

world, but also the crime-fighting role. -- prune. He has done work to

:27:38.:27:44.

make sure that when British criminals flee justice, we can bring

:27:45.:27:49.

them back. And he has promoted prunes! First stop, a gorgeous

:27:50.:27:53.

country pub, but it turns out everyone is a journalist or a very

:27:54.:27:59.

on message activist. Dark days, being a Lib Dem in the last few

:28:00.:28:03.

years? Strangely not. If you find you are a Lib Dem deep down, you do

:28:04.:28:08.

not get that disheartened, because you know that, locally, you are

:28:09.:28:11.

doing so well for the people that you live next door to that,

:28:12.:28:17.

actually, I find I am almost impervious to what happens on a

:28:18.:28:22.

national level. I am mayor of Cirencester. Have you taken any

:28:23.:28:26.

leadership lessons from Nick Clegg, inspiring new in your leadership of

:28:27.:28:31.

Cirencester? I think what he has demonstrated his patience. It has

:28:32.:28:35.

been a tough time, he has taken a lot of flak, and as the mayor of a

:28:36.:28:38.

town, lots of people agree with you and a fair few don't. You are a full

:28:39.:28:42.

on mayor, he is just a Deputy and a fair few don't. You are a full

:28:43.:28:47.

Minister, do you outrank him? I don't think so, he is in government,

:28:48.:28:53.

I am not. So our there any normal people in here? We are from

:28:54.:28:58.

Swindon, you cannot get more abnormal. Are you a big fan of his?

:28:59.:29:06.

No! What has he done wrong? I don't believe in his views at all. Where

:29:07.:29:10.

has he got to? Nigel Farage would have had a pint! At this time in the

:29:11.:29:19.

morning a copy was more appropriate. I have no time for a drink of any

:29:20.:29:23.

kind, because now we are off to look at a local traffic blackspot. This

:29:24.:29:27.

is amazing, like a Lib Dem election leaflet brought to life, Lib Dems

:29:28.:29:34.

pointing at a road. High-vis jackets! Next we had to giggle full

:29:35.:29:38.

bath, but there will be no Regency sightseeing for us, oh no, Nick is

:29:39.:29:43.

taking us to an abandoned wilderness. We have just had a

:29:44.:29:53.

health and safety briefing, we have been told to look out for

:29:54.:29:57.

dive-bombing seagulls and an angry fox. That is the sort of thing Nick

:29:58.:30:02.

Clegg has to put up with. He wants to talk about the economy but he has

:30:03.:30:07.

to dodge the day's beat new story, letters leaked by a Tory suggesting

:30:08.:30:12.

that Lib Dems are soft on knife crime. Isn't that a new kind of

:30:13.:30:23.

warfare? I just think it is silly. They may think they are clever by

:30:24.:30:27.

catching some headlines but they are not helping people who worry about

:30:28.:30:37.

knife crime, like I do. We work together... Just like the

:30:38.:30:42.

Coalition! This is a co-working space where different businesses

:30:43.:30:47.

share the same office. My time with the Deputy Prime Minister is drawing

:30:48.:30:53.

to a close. We haven't talked about the most important story of the

:30:54.:30:56.

week, that you were voted the best looking party leader and the most

:30:57.:31:04.

likely to be a good cook. Right, this is news to me and I can

:31:05.:31:08.

guarantee you that my scepticism of opinion polls has just been

:31:09.:31:14.

confirmed. Just as well because the more serious polls don't look great

:31:15.:31:20.

for him or his party. Goodbye, and thanks for the offer of a ride

:31:21.:31:26.

home! He is still walking. Malcolm Bruce

:31:27.:31:32.

joins us now. According to Lib Dem briefing documents, you are likely

:31:33.:31:38.

to choose -- lose a big chunk of your MEPs. If you lose a lot, what

:31:39.:31:43.

would that say about a party that boasts of its pro-Europe

:31:44.:31:46.

credentials? It would be disappointing because we have the

:31:47.:31:53.

most hard-working MEPs. The worry that we have is that people think

:31:54.:31:59.

the European Parliament is not important but it takes decisions

:32:00.:32:07.

that affect us. They would be disappointing for Britain as well as

:32:08.:32:11.

the Liberal Democrats. Isn't the problem that the more you bang on

:32:12.:32:15.

about your pro-European credentials, the more you slip in the polls? I do

:32:16.:32:21.

think so, we have two weeks to go and we are campaigning extremely

:32:22.:32:32.

hard. You are forced in the polls. I can tell you there are people out

:32:33.:32:37.

there who do believe Britain should stay in the EU and they are worried

:32:38.:32:43.

that other parties will take us out. The Liberal Democrats are clear, we

:32:44.:32:47.

want to stay in, we will work for reform and do it effectively. If you

:32:48.:32:52.

lose the Liberal Democrats, Britain's influence in Europe will

:32:53.:32:58.

be weakened. Your track record in Europe shows you have been

:32:59.:33:02.

spectacularly wrong again and again. In your 2009 manifesto you said the

:33:03.:33:09.

European Central Bank and the euro have been tried and tested over ten

:33:10.:33:14.

years providing a clear picture of the benefits of Eurozone membership

:33:15.:33:21.

and that proved to be nonsense. It was nonsense everywhere. Every

:33:22.:33:24.

developed bank in the world was tried and tested and failed. Europe

:33:25.:33:30.

may not be perfect, but the question people have to decide is if we are

:33:31.:33:34.

going to leave Europe and be isolated on RM, or use our influence

:33:35.:33:42.

to reform it from inside. We have allies, you work with them, that is

:33:43.:33:47.

something the Lib Dems do better than any other parties. Your 2004

:33:48.:33:53.

manifesto, you claim that being outside the euro would lead to job

:33:54.:33:58.

losses and reduced prosperity. You were just plain wrong, weren't you?

:33:59.:34:01.

Yes, but the reason is that to some were just plain wrong, weren't you?

:34:02.:34:07.

extent the euro did not observe any rules and regulations when it was

:34:08.:34:15.

set up. That is why we never recommended Britain should join at

:34:16.:34:19.

the outset because the criteria had not been met. In 2001 Nick Clegg was

:34:20.:34:27.

writing to the Financial Times... Your track record is important. He

:34:28.:34:32.

wrote that the Tisch monetary policy is not all it is cracked up to be.

:34:33.:34:37.

Britain would gain greater control over its affairs by joining the

:34:38.:34:40.

euro. How wrong can he be? We have over its affairs by joining the

:34:41.:34:49.

always argued that the currency had to abide by strict criteria. It

:34:50.:34:52.

hasn't done so and that is one to abide by strict criteria. It

:34:53.:34:55.

the reasons it has to abide by strict criteria. It

:34:56.:35:01.

recognise there is no future for Britain joining the euro and we are

:35:02.:35:06.

not advocating it. Lets put your 2010 manifesto on the screen. I

:35:07.:35:14.

didn't say it was not our long-term interest. If Europe succeeds as an

:35:15.:35:20.

entity, if the euro becomes one of the world leading currencies, there

:35:21.:35:28.

will come a point when it may be justified. In the circumstances we

:35:29.:35:33.

are in the moment, there is no recommended timescale. Let's get

:35:34.:35:37.

this right. Despite the Eurozone crisis which has cost millions of

:35:38.:35:43.

jobs, countries that were teetering on the brink of bankruptcy, the

:35:44.:35:47.

Eurozone now facing stagnation and some countries on the brink of

:35:48.:35:53.

deflation, you still won't rule out Britain joining? We are ruling it

:35:54.:35:58.

out in the foreseeable future. You can miss the point that we are

:35:59.:36:02.

working as a coalition partner in government that has secured recovery

:36:03.:36:07.

for the UK, and working as Liberal Democrats in the parliament that

:36:08.:36:10.

for the UK, and working as Liberal have cut back the European budget

:36:11.:36:13.

for the UK, and working as Liberal cooperation with others. What would

:36:14.:36:17.

the world look like if it were right for Britain to join the euro? You

:36:18.:36:23.

have 27 states at the moment, with too many

:36:24.:36:27.

have 27 states at the moment, with to meet the criteria so until you

:36:28.:36:31.

have a strong and cohesive enough single Eurozone in which all the

:36:32.:36:35.

countries can meet that criteria, Britain is better off out. So a more

:36:36.:36:42.

centralised Eurozone, that is what you would like Britain to join? No,

:36:43.:36:47.

because it can only happen by consent. Any circumstances in which

:36:48.:36:50.

any further powers would be transferred from the UK to the EU,

:36:51.:36:59.

we would support a referendum. You have just said that for the Eurozone

:37:00.:37:03.

to work, it has to be more centralised and you said if that

:37:04.:37:07.

happens, that is what Britain would join. I didn't say that, I said it

:37:08.:37:12.

would require the consent of all member states to agree to the

:37:13.:37:20.

criteria. We certainly do not envisage joining in the foreseeable

:37:21.:37:23.

future. Since you are the proud party of in, why weren't you just

:37:24.:37:32.

give us a referendum on in or out? Because it has to have a context.

:37:33.:37:37.

What David Cameron is doing is dangerous because I think the major

:37:38.:37:41.

players like Britain and France are not keen on the idea of being

:37:42.:37:46.

bullied into reforms on the instigation of just one member state

:37:47.:37:50.

which is threatening possibility to withdraw. They will have to agree to

:37:51.:37:58.

rules... Just have it now. Do you want in or out? To have a referendum

:37:59.:38:03.

against no background is to put it out of context. We are in the middle

:38:04.:38:08.

of a crisis, a year away from the general election. We have made it

:38:09.:38:17.

clear... You said we are in the middle of the Eurozone crisis? So we

:38:18.:38:22.

are not in the middle of it? What's the middle? The reality is that the

:38:23.:38:27.

Western world has gone through a deep crisis. The UK is coming out of

:38:28.:38:32.

it, the Eurozone is coming out of it. Greece have been able to borrow

:38:33.:38:37.

on the markets in recent weeks which is a sign of success. It is in our

:38:38.:38:41.

interest is the Eurozone succeeds and recovers and we should be part

:38:42.:38:45.

of it but not necessarily on the same conditions as everyone else.

:38:46.:38:50.

The Liberal Democrats work with others to deliver Britain's

:38:51.:38:53.

interests and if they are not there, their interests will be undermined.

:38:54.:39:12.

Hello and welcome to the Sunday Politics in Northern Ireland. Dark

:39:13.:39:16.

forces, cabals and "an embittered rump of the RUC" - how far is Sinn

:39:17.:39:22.

Fein prepared to go as it accuses the PSNI of political policing over

:39:23.:39:24.

Gerry Adams' arrest? And with the first demonstration on the streets,

:39:25.:39:27.

could republicans escalate their protest and just how far would that

:39:28.:39:30.

protest go? In a specially extended Sunday Politics, we'll hear from all

:39:31.:39:38.

five Executive parties. So, the man who is arguably the best known of

:39:39.:39:42.

our active politicians across the world, Gerry Adams, is in his fifth

:39:43.:39:46.

day of questioning by the PSNI at Antrim police station. He remains

:39:47.:39:49.

there after a judge gave detectives up until this evening to continue

:39:50.:39:52.

interviewing the Sinn Fein President. The issue has put

:39:53.:39:55.

Northern Ireland back on the radar of the world's media, many of whom

:39:56.:39:58.

have been in Antrim. Our reporter Catherine Morrison is there now.

:39:59.:40:01.

Catherine, what are the options open to the police? When Gerry Adams

:40:02.:40:16.

arrived here at Antrim police station voluntarily on Wednesday

:40:17.:40:20.

night few believed he would still be here five days later. On Friday

:40:21.:40:25.

night detectives were granted another two days to question him

:40:26.:40:29.

further. That runs out at five o'clock tonight so at that point

:40:30.:40:36.

they must either release him, charge him, or apply for an extension.

:40:37.:40:44.

There was a view he could be kept for up to 20 days but that would

:40:45.:40:49.

take us over the election period and so seems unlikely. He is being

:40:50.:40:59.

questioned for up to 17 hours per day. The cells are very basic. Just

:41:00.:41:07.

a rough bed and buying kit at night. This is perfectly normal practice.

:41:08.:41:15.

Mr Adams is not being treated any differently to anyone else and it is

:41:16.:41:20.

all human right is compliant. The clock is ticking and the countdown

:41:21.:41:28.

is on to the deadline tonight. Thank you. So, the first street protest

:41:29.:41:35.

over the Sinn Fein leader's detention happened yesterday

:41:36.:41:38.

afternoon attended by a number of prominent party figures, including

:41:39.:41:41.

several MLAs. At the West Belfast rally, Martin McGuinness got a

:41:42.:41:43.

rousing reception from supporters at a newly painted mural of Gerry

:41:44.:41:47.

Adams. The Deputy First Minister had strong criticism of the PSNI, and

:41:48.:41:50.

blamed what he cold "an embittered rump of the old RUC" wanting to

:41:51.:42:01.

settle scores. We fully support the PS NI and a democratic policing of

:42:02.:42:10.

justice but our support is a political support. No police force

:42:11.:42:15.

anywhere in the world is immune from criticism if it is acting in a

:42:16.:42:23.

partisan fashion. The arrest of Gerry Adams is evidence that there

:42:24.:42:29.

are people in the PSNI who are against the peace protest who hate

:42:30.:42:44.

Gerry Adams and heat Sinn Fein. -- hate. And just this morning, the

:42:45.:42:50.

First Minister Peter Robinson has accused Sinn Fein of attempting to

:42:51.:42:53.

blackmail the police with a "crude and overt political threat". In a

:42:54.:42:55.

strongly worded statement, Mr Robinson uses the term "bully boy

:42:56.:42:58.

tactics", and says republicans have crossed the line. With me now are

:42:59.:43:02.

the Sinn Fein MLA, Gerry Kelly, and the DUP MP, Jeffrey Donaldson. How

:43:03.:43:06.

much threat do you think the process is under with this arrest? I think

:43:07.:43:16.

Peter Robinson has a brass neck saying that the process is viable.

:43:17.:43:26.

He has been defending the protests of flag-wavers and all the rest of

:43:27.:43:32.

it. There is an issue. We have been very clear about this. The reason

:43:33.:43:38.

people are pro testing in the street is because this is about political

:43:39.:43:44.

policing. It is entirely linked to the fact there are two elections

:43:45.:43:50.

coming up and that Sinn Fein is surging forward is. That is what

:43:51.:43:55.

this is about. They could have waited until the end. Articles were

:43:56.:44:04.

written decades ago as well as the so-called Boston tapes and they have

:44:05.:44:08.

gone through every single thing they have gone through many times before.

:44:09.:44:14.

They could have done this ten months ago. Gerry Adams himself offered to

:44:15.:44:20.

come forward five weeks ago. There may well have been reasons for that.

:44:21.:44:27.

They should clarify that. What I and others believe is that there is

:44:28.:44:35.

political policing, when we see there is a small cabal through the

:44:36.:44:40.

PSNI all you have to do is look at what happened in the ombudsman's

:44:41.:44:46.

office. We demanded an enquiry because when they were a link with

:44:47.:44:52.

state forces who were suspected of being involved in killings they were

:44:53.:44:59.

given a pre-packaged of interviews. That is differential policing, it is

:45:00.:45:03.

not acceptable and we will criticise it. There is the evidence, he says.

:45:04.:45:18.

I do not accept that. The police have the full legal right to do what

:45:19.:45:23.

they are doing. Who is this cabal that Sinn Fein are talking about? I

:45:24.:45:29.

have no doubt that the decision to interview Gerry Adams and the timing

:45:30.:45:34.

of that would have been decided at the highest levels by the most

:45:35.:45:39.

senior officers in the PSNI. Is he suggesting they are this cabal, hard

:45:40.:45:47.

the people inside the pleas force who heat Sinn Fein? I am concerned

:45:48.:45:54.

that within the senior team there are people who still have the old

:45:55.:46:02.

guard view of this. I did not see who this included. That is in the

:46:03.:46:12.

senior edge lawns. Let me make this clear. There are also people in the

:46:13.:46:19.

senior lecturer lawns who are brought in and who are pushing

:46:20.:46:24.

things forward but there are others whose influence is there. What about

:46:25.:46:33.

the statement from your party leader today which talks about Sinn Fein

:46:34.:46:39.

saying it will be assessed its attitude to policing? The PSNI must

:46:40.:46:50.

not be the subject of Republican bully boy tactics, does that kind of

:46:51.:46:58.

language help? It goes to the heart of what the peace process is about.

:46:59.:47:05.

You are either supporting the policing or not. In terms of this

:47:06.:47:10.

situation, you cannot on the one hand say police must sue things

:47:11.:47:18.

impartially and act the same time say if Gerry Adams were to be

:47:19.:47:27.

charged they must reassess their thinking and support. I am asking if

:47:28.:47:36.

this language is helpful? The anger on the doorsteps is palpable. People

:47:37.:47:41.

are very concerned by the very subtle and in some cases not so

:47:42.:47:46.

subtle pressure that Sinn Fein are trying to apply to the police and

:47:47.:47:52.

judicial system over this issue. I think there is an attempt to

:47:53.:47:58.

intimidate the police on this issue. Let's not lose sight of what is at

:47:59.:48:04.

the heart of this. The abduction of the mother of ten children, her

:48:05.:48:11.

brutal torture and murder. Our body lay undiscovered for ten years, her

:48:12.:48:16.

family deprived of the right to grieve the loss. They are entitled

:48:17.:48:23.

to justice. I do not hear any remorse from Sinn Fein about what

:48:24.:48:30.

happened to hard. Do you also accept that unless Gerry Adams is found

:48:31.:48:34.

guilty of this he is an innocent man? Of course he is. That point has

:48:35.:48:42.

been made by the DUP throughout this process. The police must be allowed

:48:43.:48:49.

to get on with their job of this investigation, to question whoever

:48:50.:48:54.

they need to question and find justice for the family of Jean

:48:55.:49:01.

McConville. No-one should be putting pressure on the police to come up

:49:02.:49:04.

with the conclusion other than the one which is just and lawful.

:49:05.:49:11.

Robinson is right to say that when you prevaricate and are unclear

:49:12.:49:14.

about your support for the rule of law and the police, when it becomes

:49:15.:49:20.

conditional, that is a breach of what we agreed to at St Andrews. You

:49:21.:49:28.

would think that Unionists never criticise the police. I sit on the

:49:29.:49:33.

police board and listen to them attacking the police all the time.

:49:34.:49:37.

When you take something like the flag protests as an example they

:49:38.:49:43.

were out attacking the police for their actions so let's not say this

:49:44.:49:48.

is an absolute support in one way or another. If the police do something

:49:49.:49:54.

wrong I will be the first out to criticise them. Geoffrey also said

:49:55.:50:01.

about the family of Jean McConville, one of the first things that Gerry

:50:02.:50:09.

Adams said was this was a terrible injustice done to a family. To see

:50:10.:50:16.

another injustice will not help the first injustice. The role thing is

:50:17.:50:24.

ratcheted up when people hear Gerry Adams -- Martin McGuinness saying

:50:25.:50:31.

his party will have to rethink their support of the PSNI if Mr Adams is

:50:32.:50:41.

charged. Went Gerry Adams was arrested instead of speaking to him

:50:42.:50:49.

the whole thing was ratcheted up. Nobody is arguing that anyone should

:50:50.:50:57.

be above the law. They have done it in the mouth of an election when

:50:58.:51:00.

they have had this so-called evidence which is very dubious in

:51:01.:51:07.

any case, they have had that for ten months and they were questioning him

:51:08.:51:14.

in the 1970s, this is a fishing exercise. He is being question

:51:15.:51:20.

now... You do not actually know that. That is my opinion. Unless you

:51:21.:51:28.

want to bring some police officers here I will give my opinions. You

:51:29.:51:38.

let the process take its course and you make the decision when the PSNI

:51:39.:51:45.

decide what happens next. They could have done it some time ago or after

:51:46.:51:50.

the election, the fact it was done at the time of the election and

:51:51.:51:55.

taking our reader out who is crucial... Wouldn't that have been a

:51:56.:52:04.

political calculation to say we cannot get ourselves involved at the

:52:05.:52:10.

time of an election? You think that it's political? Fair enough, so then

:52:11.:52:15.

you accept that equally the other decision is elliptical as well?

:52:16.:52:31.

Gerry Kelly said it was a political decision to arrest him three weeks

:52:32.:52:37.

before an election. I do not accept that. There is no pardon during the

:52:38.:52:43.

run-up to an election. The police must be allowed to explain the

:52:44.:52:52.

evidence they had. It is not our role to second-guess the police.

:52:53.:52:59.

There is a specialist unit in Carrickfergus totally dedicated to

:53:00.:53:02.

investigate the soldiers who were associated with the so-called bloody

:53:03.:53:09.

Sunday. I never hear Sinn Fein saying that is political policing or

:53:10.:53:12.

complaining about dedicated resources. What Sinn Fein want is

:53:13.:53:20.

won the army and the police in the dock but they do not want a

:53:21.:53:24.

Republican in the dock. That is not acceptable. We have already argued

:53:25.:53:33.

that here is the police having all the evidence, knowing exactly who

:53:34.:53:38.

the soldiers were involved in bloody Sunday, none of them being arrested

:53:39.:53:44.

and in fact they know they have all the evidence there because there has

:53:45.:53:47.

been an inquiry that brought all the evidence out. Will Sinn Fein

:53:48.:53:54.

withdraw support for policing in Northern Ireland if Mr Adams is

:53:55.:54:01.

charged? We believe in policing, we call the police to account and will

:54:02.:54:06.

continue to do so. We will assess... So it is a possibility?

:54:07.:54:14.

Parker McGuinness has been trying to get Peter Robinson to stand shoulder

:54:15.:54:18.

to shoulder with him to go through things that have been going on.

:54:19.:54:29.

Street yes or no? Is there any possibility Sinn Fein will withdraw

:54:30.:54:34.

its support for policing if Mr Adams is charged? With respect to you, you

:54:35.:54:42.

are not a lawyer and I am not in court. I will give the ands I want

:54:43.:54:50.

to give. I am and sitting in my way. Let me answer. We will assess all of

:54:51.:54:57.

this as we go on. What do you make of that answer? It is like what

:54:58.:55:04.

Martin McGuinness has said, they will assess the situation, I can say

:55:05.:55:11.

categorically DUP support for the police is unequivocal. Did you hear

:55:12.:55:17.

what the justice minister said yesterday when he talked about

:55:18.:55:22.

pressure being put on the police why everyone when it suits them. The DUP

:55:23.:55:36.

has not put pressure on any judge or anyone at any time. We will

:55:37.:55:41.

criticise the police if we think they get something wrong. ) that is

:55:42.:55:46.

exactly the point, you are allowed to do that but Gerry Kelly is not?

:55:47.:55:53.

There is the difference between criticising the police and

:55:54.:55:55.

supporting the police. We support the rule of law. Did you see that

:55:56.:56:10.

extract earlier? He went on to say that they would monitor the

:56:11.:56:14.

situation. Our position is clear and our support for the police is

:56:15.:56:23.

unequivocal. He did not give you a straight answer, as I have. Gerry

:56:24.:56:29.

Kelly did not say that. We need to leave it there. Thank you both.

:56:30.:56:34.

The woman at the centre of this investigation, Jean McConville, was

:56:35.:56:39.

abducted and murdered in 1972. Members of her family have talked

:56:40.:56:51.

about their thoughts this week. Personally speaking, if anybody is

:56:52.:56:54.

going to trial, I don't think they should be going to the courts in

:56:55.:56:59.

Northern Ireland. They should be in the Hague for war crimes, because

:57:00.:57:07.

this is a war crime. It was ordered by people on the streets. It was an

:57:08.:57:12.

army that took my mother away. They kidnapped, beat her up for the

:57:13.:57:17.

length of time that they did, for six or seven days. They tortured her

:57:18.:57:25.

for six or seven days, and then they took and they executed her. I said

:57:26.:57:32.

in 1994, the first time I spoke about my mother, I said that I will

:57:33.:57:37.

campaign for her until the day I die. If anything happens to be, I

:57:38.:57:41.

have five children who will carry on campaigning for the truth. Helen

:57:42.:57:46.

McKendry there. Whatever happens to Gerry Adams Ladies Day, whether he

:57:47.:57:50.

is charged or released, what impact will it have?

:57:51.:57:57.

Mike Nesbitt and Alasdair McDonnell idea, and the Alliance Party's

:57:58.:58:02.

deputy leader Naomi Long. How big a bigger lobby in this morning? This

:58:03.:58:07.

is a proper crisis. Jean McConville's family have been windy

:58:08.:58:14.

-- waiting 42 years for Gerry Adams to be questioned. It is entirely

:58:15.:58:18.

self-serving of Sinn Fein to complain that it took the police

:58:19.:58:22.

seven weeks to respond to the offer from Gerry Adams that he would speak

:58:23.:58:27.

to them. A man whose name has been associated with a seamless crying

:58:28.:58:35.

for decades -- a heinous crime for decades office speak to the police.

:58:36.:58:39.

The police taken up on that offer. Thirdly, the police are attacked by

:58:40.:58:45.

Sinn, accused without evidence of having a cabal of senior

:58:46.:58:51.

officers... The timing is important. Gerry Kelly said that three weeks

:58:52.:58:55.

before people go to the polls North and South of the border, their party

:58:56.:59:01.

leader is arrested in inaction with something that happened in 1972. And

:59:02.:59:06.

who is responsible for the timing tee-mac Gerry Adams. He initiated

:59:07.:59:11.

the process. Last night, I watched the TV coverage of the rally. A

:59:12.:59:16.

senior Republican introduced Martin McGuinness by saying, how gave a --

:59:17.:59:22.

how dare they touch our party leader? Does that suggest that Gerry

:59:23.:59:27.

Adams should be above the law? That is an explicit technician --

:59:28.:59:38.

admission. They believe that Gerry Adams, and others, are untouchable

:59:39.:59:42.

in terms of the law. Howdy respond to that, Alistair MacDonald? Simply,

:59:43.:59:48.

and I don't see this as being primarily about Gerry Adams all the

:59:49.:59:53.

police, but it is about justice. Jean McConville was kidnapped,

:59:54.:00:00.

tortured and murdered and buried secretly. It is a heinous crime, a

:00:01.:00:09.

vile crime, and her ten children were left orphans. They have been

:00:10.:00:13.

looking for justice for 40 years. It has now become a political issue.

:00:14.:00:17.

Mike Nesbitt says we are now in a proper crisis. I am not sure we are

:00:18.:00:23.

in a proper crisis. How would you describe it? I think there is an

:00:24.:00:27.

amount of spin around it. There is justice required here. The SDLP are

:00:28.:00:33.

family. We worked through the family.

:00:34.:00:41.

process and we are still prepared to work with them. Is political

:00:42.:00:44.

policing responsible for the decision to arrest Gerry Adams at

:00:45.:00:45.

this time, decision to arrest Gerry Adams at

:00:46.:00:54.

political policing involved in this. I quite simply

:00:55.:00:58.

political policing involved in this. voluntarily going to the police, and

:00:59.:00:59.

he chose the timing. Basically, voluntarily going to the police, and

:01:00.:01:03.

may or may not have been aware of prepared for

:01:04.:01:05.

may or may not have been aware of detained him, but Gerry Adams chose

:01:06.:01:07.

the timing. detained him, but Gerry Adams chose

:01:08.:01:12.

reservations about the process? I believe we are

:01:13.:01:15.

reservations about the process? I our actions. I believe the police

:01:16.:01:20.

are responsible to question any of us who are suspect all have evidence

:01:21.:01:27.

to give about a crime. Therefore, the police had -- if

:01:28.:01:33.

to give about a crime. Therefore, not detained him and they had

:01:34.:01:36.

to give about a crime. Therefore, evidence to detain him, and I

:01:37.:01:40.

to give about a crime. Therefore, like to see that, but there are so

:01:41.:01:42.

to give about a crime. Therefore, pieces of the jigsaw here, that none

:01:43.:01:45.

to give about a crime. Therefore, of us are in a position of the full

:01:46.:01:51.

facts. A decision to question him, is that political or not? There are

:01:52.:01:55.

sharply contrasting views of the situation. Both of them aggregate it

:01:56.:02:03.

when it suits them about the rule of law and throughout the accusation

:02:04.:02:06.

about political policing when it is someone in their camp who is being

:02:07.:02:11.

arrested. It is not actually a sap -- has sharply divided as you think.

:02:12.:02:15.

The truth of the matter is that the police have a job to do and they

:02:16.:02:19.

must do it in partially. They have to follow when the evidence leads.

:02:20.:02:23.

The judge has extended questioning for another 48 hours because they

:02:24.:02:30.

believe there is the questioning continued -- continuing. None of us

:02:31.:02:34.

are above the law. The people at the heart of this Arnotts Gerry Adams

:02:35.:02:39.

and Sinn Fein, not the Unionist parties or Stormont or the

:02:40.:02:42.

politics. The thing at the centre of this is the murder of Jean

:02:43.:02:46.

McConville and her family's desire for justice. That has to be the

:02:47.:02:50.

focus, and I think throwing around this political policing all the

:02:51.:02:53.

time, the bottom line is that if somebody does something wrong or

:02:54.:02:56.

requires the police to question them about it, that is not political

:02:57.:03:00.

policing, that is policing. So Sinn Fein have got this wrong? Byes. This

:03:01.:03:08.

needs to follow due process. This needs to go through the normal

:03:09.:03:13.

course of law. Gerry Adams is innocent until proven guilty. He has

:03:14.:03:16.

that right like everyone else, but he has no right to demand that his

:03:17.:03:20.

questioning or the treatment of him as a potential witness in this

:03:21.:03:23.

situation should be any different to any other person in society. And yet

:03:24.:03:28.

you saw how Gerry Kelly reacted, similar to the way that Martin

:03:29.:03:31.

McGuinness and other Sinn Fein spokespeople have reacted, saying

:03:32.:03:36.

that that is political policing, there is a Kabbalah, the timing was

:03:37.:03:42.

deliberate. The timing is what it is. If they delayed until after the

:03:43.:03:46.

section, that would be political policing. If you take into account

:03:47.:03:52.

the electoral cycle, when you are undertaking your job as a police

:03:53.:03:55.

officer, then clearly that is a political decision. If you follow

:03:56.:04:00.

the lead is where they go and you do the job, that is not political

:04:01.:04:04.

policing. That is policing. Increasingly, people in the public

:04:05.:04:10.

are getting fed up listening to politicians throwing around

:04:11.:04:12.

accusations about political policing, whether it is Gerry Kelly

:04:13.:04:17.

on the bonnet of a Land Rover, or outbursts on Facebook, people are

:04:18.:04:21.

tied on it on both sides. We need support for the police and the rule

:04:22.:04:25.

of law which is unequivocal and direct. What about the language used

:04:26.:04:30.

by Mike Nesbitt about Peter Robinson? I quoted earlier, talking

:04:31.:04:37.

about reassessing Sinn Fein's attitude towards the arrest. I put

:04:38.:04:49.

the pointy Jeffrey Donaldson, that is arguably not helpful in the

:04:50.:04:54.

current cauldron politics that we find ourselves in. Last night, Alex

:04:55.:05:12.

Mackie was speaking to air UK wide audience, and he said that we will

:05:13.:05:18.

support, we can support what we want. What does that mean? It is not

:05:19.:05:23.

that long ago that Sinn Fein would not condemn the IRA for murdering

:05:24.:05:28.

and for maiming police officers. What happens now? If a young

:05:29.:05:32.

nationalists came to me and said, I was thinking about a career in the

:05:33.:05:38.

PSNI, could I say, go for it. Should I not be worried that he will end up

:05:39.:05:41.

like Stephen Carroll and Roman kirk? Don't you have to balance that

:05:42.:05:47.

with what Martin -- Martin McGuinness said about fully

:05:48.:05:53.

supporting the PSNI in the proper discharge of its duties? You can't

:05:54.:05:59.

cherry pick. You cannot cherry pick support for the rule of law, and if

:06:00.:06:04.

we all agree that the police should be operationally independent, we

:06:05.:06:06.

should all be at home today waiting for eight o'clock to see what the

:06:07.:06:10.

police do. If we have concerns, we should be taking them to the

:06:11.:06:13.

policing board. That is what we agreed in 1998. You reserve the

:06:14.:06:19.

right to criticise the police as well, don't you? How many times have

:06:20.:06:24.

I quietly gone to speak to the Chief Constable Matt Baggott what I do. I

:06:25.:06:27.

asked to speak to the chief constable. I say, I want to hear

:06:28.:06:33.

your side of the story. I will not go out and stand in front of the

:06:34.:06:38.

cameras and make a big fuss. I have done it several times in the last

:06:39.:06:41.

couple of years. The police think it is a sensible way to go forward. I

:06:42.:06:45.

think it is a sensible way to go forward. What we have had is ramping

:06:46.:06:51.

up in a detrimental way to building community, trust, mutual trust

:06:52.:06:54.

between politicians... Alistair MacDonald, how important is support

:06:55.:07:01.

for policing and maintenance of devolution? There is a lot of spin

:07:02.:07:06.

and Peter Robinson's, as were unhelpful. They are an

:07:07.:07:10.

electioneering around a situation. This is about justice and truth. It

:07:11.:07:16.

is about dealing with the past, and we have to deal with the past and

:07:17.:07:21.

deal with this in the context of the McConvilles, and victims and

:07:22.:07:24.

survivors generally. That is where we have to take this, not worrying

:07:25.:07:27.

about the political spin is that I put on it. A final thought? We

:07:28.:07:32.

should be concerned when people are threatening to sit -- withdraw their

:07:33.:07:37.

support from the police. It is a serious matter when people bandy

:07:38.:07:41.

about words like political policing, something which politicians on both

:07:42.:07:45.

sides have done. What we need to do is recognise that all the crises we

:07:46.:07:48.

have faith in the last few months have arisen from a lack of our

:07:49.:07:53.

ability to deal with the past in a copper hands of way. We have to take

:07:54.:07:58.

this forward into a peace process with credibility. Thank you for

:07:59.:08:02.

joining us. Time to look back at the political beat in 60 seconds.

:08:03.:08:08.

Gerry Adams was arrested over the murder of Jean McConville in 1972.

:08:09.:08:15.

The Sinn Fein president continued to deny any part in the crime. I will

:08:16.:08:22.

tell the PSNI that I am innocent of any abduction, killing or burial of

:08:23.:08:29.

Jean McConville. The McConville family believe that the Sinn Fein

:08:30.:08:32.

president was involved. I have always believed that Gerry

:08:33.:08:35.

Adams was involved in the murder of my mother, and until the day I die,

:08:36.:08:39.

I will believe that. For the third time in 18 months,

:08:40.:08:45.

MLAs debated but did not pass a motion calling for the legalisation

:08:46.:08:51.

of gay marriage. The traditional values of marriage is the bedrock of

:08:52.:08:57.

any stable society. The Assembly remembered an independent MLA, but

:08:58.:09:00.

it emerged that his former assistant will follow him into the chamber.

:09:01.:09:06.

Some MLAs got little rowdy. The culture minister had that number. It

:09:07.:09:08.

is like bingo! The culture minister comparing DUP

:09:09.:09:24.

MLAs to "oul dolls at bingo". Similar O'Connor and Liam Clarke are

:09:25.:09:28.

with me now. An interesting exchange of views this morning. What have you

:09:29.:09:32.

made of what you have heard, Fionnuala O'Connor? There is a lot

:09:33.:09:43.

of spin and froth. I would be inclined to talk this all down, not

:09:44.:09:46.

just because I would like to, the because people have got themselves

:09:47.:09:51.

exercise and have other spoken. I wonder if Sinn Fein really have

:09:52.:09:56.

thought this through. They have done what they do very well, reacted on

:09:57.:10:00.

the hoof, marshalled their forces in a political sense. But I listened

:10:01.:10:11.

yesterday to someone saying, what we need to establish now is at what

:10:12.:10:16.

stage Gerry Adams will end this conversation with the PSNI. At that

:10:17.:10:21.

stage, I don't know whether Sinn Fein were thinking they would play

:10:22.:10:25.

this in a very lofty and idealistic way and say that he is helping

:10:26.:10:28.

police with their enquiries, we are happy to help and we want to help

:10:29.:10:31.

the McConville family. Perhaps they thought they should handle it like

:10:32.:10:36.

that, and perhaps they should have. May be that changed when he was

:10:37.:10:40.

arrested and held for a further 48 hours. That is definitely a part of

:10:41.:10:45.

it. They are reflecting a lot of anger on the ground among their

:10:46.:10:49.

people and they are trying to manage that. They are trying to manage and

:10:50.:10:53.

in the North on the ground. They are trying to manage electoral prospects

:10:54.:10:55.

in the South will stop in the middle, they have come out saying,

:10:56.:10:59.

political policing, and that is a hard one to get off, hard for the

:11:00.:11:03.

police holding Gerry Adams, no doubt not listening to television and

:11:04.:11:06.

radio as they do so, but definitely under pressure now to hold him for

:11:07.:11:12.

longer or perhaps to place a charge when they may think there is no

:11:13.:11:15.

evidence to do it. It is a challenge for Sinn Fein to criticise policing,

:11:16.:11:21.

to which they are fully committed to this strange -- at this stage?

:11:22.:11:29.

Lasting damage will be done out of this. People have other spoken --

:11:30.:11:36.

other spoken. You will have a situation where, if Gerry Adams is

:11:37.:11:40.

not charged for proper reasons if there is no evidence, people might

:11:41.:11:49.

say, pressure, that is what gets you off. They will think it is worth

:11:50.:11:56.

trying. And I think that Sinn Fein by saying, there is still a cab

:11:57.:12:02.

while at the top of the police, they are giving entitlement to the idea

:12:03.:12:09.

that they signed to something without examining it. I am not sure

:12:10.:12:14.

Sinn Fein mean that, but they are creating a situation. It is bad that

:12:15.:12:19.

the two parties cannot in some way toward making themselves to start

:12:20.:12:21.

writing this down. You wrote a piece in the Telegraph yesterday, making

:12:22.:12:28.

the point that if Gerry Adams is not charged, there will be those who

:12:29.:12:31.

call the conclusion that the PDF and PSNI have caved in under pressure

:12:32.:12:38.

from Republicans. It is bad in a democracy and you could not imagine

:12:39.:12:40.

it happening in Britain, or the South, a party threatening the

:12:41.:12:49.

police. You are creating a situation where people assume that pressure

:12:50.:12:55.

will work if Gerry Adams is not charged. There is a likelihood that

:12:56.:13:00.

he will not be charged. Is the PSNI dammed if they do and stand if they

:13:01.:13:06.

don't? Yes, the police in every society says that situation. It is

:13:07.:13:17.

comical to listen to saying it is dreadful -- listen to them saying

:13:18.:13:23.

that they will withdraw support from the police. I remember Ian Paisley

:13:24.:13:28.

shouting at police, don't come crying to me, when he was being

:13:29.:13:31.

carried out of Stormont after a long process. What happens next? It will

:13:32.:13:39.

all depend on if Gerry Adams is charged or not. If he is released,

:13:40.:13:44.

there will be a scenario. The worst would be if he is charged with

:13:45.:13:49.

membership and nothing else. We will see what happens later today

:13:50.:13:52.

perhaps. Thank you very much both. There will be an extended news

:13:53.:13:56.

report tonight at 10:15pm.

:13:57.:13:59.

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