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Monday, 21 October, 2002, 17:25 GMT 18:25 UK
Gerry Adams

Date of Birth

6 October, 1948

Political profile

Gerry Adams, the President of Sinn Fein, has been for many years the best known face of the Irish Republican movement.

For a long time, however, his voice was not allowed to be broadcast in the UK, due to his alleged links to the IRA.

He has been elected MP for West Belfast at every election since 1983, except the 1992 general election, although, like all Sinn Fein MPs, he refuses to swear the oath of allegiance.

This precludes him from taking his seat in the Commons chamber, though following a decision of the House in December 2001, he has an office in the Palace of Westminster.

Mr Adams is also a member of the Northern Ireland Assembly.

He is a veteran of the Irish civil rights movement, and was interned in 1972 and between 1973 and 1977.

He has led Sinn Fein since 1983, and has been one of the leading figures in the Northern Ireland peace process.

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