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Last Updated: Friday, 7 March 2008, 13:04 GMT
IRA bomber event held at Stormont
Farrell was one of three IRA members shot dead by the SAS
Farrell was one of three IRA members shot dead by the SAS
Sinn Féin has proceeded with an event at Stormont to celebrate the life of IRA member Maireád Farrell.

The party wanted to hold the function in the Long Gallery, but has decided to hold the meeting in its members' room instead.

The decision was made after an Assembly Commission ruling on Thursday which said events held in the Long Gallery now need cross-community support.

A small group of loyalists gathered to protest at the event.

Sinn Féin President Gerry Adams said controversy surrounding the event had been blown out of all proportion.

"Half a dozen protesters outside is not exactly the charging of the barricades," he said.

"There is an element within the DUP who want to pick a fight with Sinn Féin. Our friend, Maireád Farrell, has been caught up in that."

The party has asked for an inventory of all symbols at Stormont, suggesting statues, such as Lord Carson's, could become a battleground.

Farrell was shot dead by the SAS in Gibraltar in 1988 along with two other IRA members.

Keys to a car found in her handbag led to the discovery in Spain of five packages of Semtex explosive.

She was jailed between 1976 and 1986 for the bombing of the Conway Hotel in Dunmurry, outside Belfast.

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