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Thursday, 31 May, 2001, 10:36 GMT 11:36 UK
IRA Statement: 31 May 2001
The following is the full text of the IRA statement released on 31 May 2001:

The leadership of Oglaigh na hEireann [the IRA] confirms yesterday's comments by Cyril Ramaphosa and Martti Ahtisaari in respect of a third inspection of IRA arms dumps.

On 6 May 2000 we outlined a clear and reasonable context in which the IRA leadership would initiate a process to put arms beyond use in a complete and verifiable manner.

We also gave a number of undertakings which were premised on the speedy and full implementation of the Good Friday Agreement and other commitments, both public and private, made by the British Government.

The IRA leadership agreed to put in place a confidence building measure to confirm that our weapons remain secure.

Subsequently, the two agreed international inspectors carried out an inspection of a number of our arms dumps and submitted a report to the IICD [the Independent International Commission on Decommissioning].

The British Government failed to honour the commitments it entered into at that time.

Nevertheless, last October we announced that a re-inspection of these dumps had taken place.

We wish to confirm that another inspection has taken place in recent days.

On 8 March 2001 the IRA leadership announced it would enter into further discussions with the IICD.

We did so despite the British government's continuing failure to honour the commitments it entered into at Hillsborough in May 2000.

We did so on the basis of the position we outlined in our 6 May statement as an earnest of our commitment to resolve the issue of arms. [sic]

Since 8 March, our representative has been involved in an ongoing series of discussions with the IICD including four meetings.

This continuing dialogue and the inspections represent clear and irrefutable evidence of the IRA's commitment to a just, equitable peace settlement.

The IRA leadership has honoured every commitment we have made and we will continue to do so; others should do likewise.

We reiterate our view that the resolution of the issue of arms is a necessary step in a genuine peace process.

Signed P O'Neill

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