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Cummins calls on Sinn Féin to distance itself from comments that Palestine needs a “Canary Wharf”

1st August 2014 - Fine Gael Press Office

Fine Gael Waterford Senator and the Party’s Leader in the Seanad, Maurice Cummins, has today (Friday) called on Sinn Féin to distance itself from comments made by Sinn Féin Councillor and Leader on Waterford County Council, John Hearne, that a Canary Wharf type incident is needed to resolve the conflict in the Middle East. Senator Cummins was speaking after the Seanad was reconvened yesterday to discuss the conflicts in the Middle East and Ukraine.

“During yesterday’s Seanad debate I highlighted the extreme comments made by Cllr. John Hearne on WLRFM recently, where he alluded to the fact that a Canary Wharf type incident is needed to resolve the current impasse in the Middle East. In the aftermath of the Seanad debate I am surprised and dismayed by the deafening silence from Sinn Féin on this matter.

“To say that the UN should shell Israel and also that, in the case of Northern Ireland, England were only brought to the negotiating table by the bombing of Canary Wharf, are silly and inflammatory comments. I pose the question, will Sinn Féin distance itself from the comments of Cllr. Hearne? A number of Sinn Féin Senators took part in yesterday’s Seanad debate and not one of them addressed my concerns about Cllr. Hearne’s dangerous attempts at foreign policy. The silence on the matter was deafening.

“Inappropriate statements such as these are an insult to all those who lost their lives during the Troubles and to the people of Palestine who are currently experiencing terrible suffering. If the Middle East can learn anything from our experience on this island, it is how to sit down to talk and resolve differences through respect of one another’s history and culture.

“When the mask slips from Sinn Fein we see what lies beneath. The comments of Cllr. Hearne beg the question – is this the kind of foreign policy we should come to expect from Sinn Féin now? It really makes a mockery of their claim that they are ready for government.”

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