L’UDA RINUNCIA AL PROPRIO ARSENALE
L’Ulster Defence Association (UDA) ha confermato l’avvenuta smantellamento dei propri arsenali
L’organizzazione terroristica lealista ha ancora cinque settimane di tempo per consegnare e rendere inutilizzabili le armi, in caso contrario l’autorità giudiziaria potrebbe intervenire utilizzando i possibili ritrovamenti di quelle stesse armi, come prove in tribunale.
Un altro fondamentale passo storico questo, per la rinuncia alla lotta armata da parte delle bande paramilitari lealiste: prima dell’UDA, già l’UVF (Ulster Volunteer Force) aveva consegnato le armi lo scorso giugno.
La dichiarazione storica dell’ UDA è stato letta da Frankie Gallagher dell’ UPRG (Ulster Political Research Group), un organismo che fornisce analisi politica per l’UDA. Egli ha riferito che: “Oggi la leadership dell’UDA è in grado di confermare che tutte le armi sono state rese inutilizzabili”.
Gallagher ha categoricamente smentito una voce che circolava già da tempo; ossia che la decommissioning fosse scaturita da offerte di ingenti finanziamenti per le aree lealiste.
L’associazione “Relatives for Justice“, che si batte per riportare a galla la verità sugli assassinii durante i Troubles, si dice non interessata all’operazione di smantellamento degli arsenali, ma piuttosto vorrebbe la verità sulla collusione di questi lealisti, su come siano stati armati, infiltrati, controllati per giungere alle centinaia di omicidi settari e politici.
Lo smantellamento è stato confermato da John de Chastelain, eminenza grigia di operazioni di questo respiro, a capo dell’International Commission on Decommissioning (IICD).
Secondo le sue dichiarazioni, le armi, munizioni, esplosivi e ordigni di vario tipo dell’UDA, sono stati totalmente distrutti. Aggiungendo poi che tali armamenti “costituiscono la totalità di quelli sotto il loro controllo.”
La disattivazione è stato confermata anche da testimoni oculari indipendenti, Lord Eames, l’ex arcivescovo di Armagh e Sir George Quigley, l’ex presidente dell’ Ulster Bank.
UDA confirm guns decommissioned (BBC News Northern Ireland)
The Ulster Defence Association (UDA) has said it has put its weapons beyond use.
It is understood the decommissioning happened in recent weeks.
The loyalist paramilitary group was five weeks away from a government deadline to complete the decommissioning of its weapons.
Once this amnesty ended, any UDA weapons discovered by police could have been forensically tested and the evidence used in court cases.
The UDA and the Ulster Freedom Fighters (UFF), a cover name it used for its paramilitary activities, are suspected of being behind 400 murders between 1971 and 2001.
A second, and older loyalist group, the Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF) completed decommissioning in June last year.
The UDA statement was read by Frankie Gallagher of the UPRG – the Ulster Political Research Group, a body which provides political analysis for the UDA.
He said: “Today the leadership of the Ulster Defence Association can confirm that all weaponry under its control has been put verifiably beyond use.”
He categorically denied that the decommissioning was bought with the offer of government investment in loyalist areas.
Relatives for Justice, which speaks for some relatives of UDA murder victims, said families are “not interested” in UDA decommissioning but instead “want the truth about collusion between these loyalists, how they were armed, infiltrated, directed and controlled to carry our hundreds of sectarian killings and political assassinations.”
The decommissioning was confirmed by General John de Chastelain, who witnessed the act as the head of the international decommissioning body.
He said it was “a major act of decommissioning” in which arms, ammunition, explosives and explosive devices were destroyed.
He added that the leadership of the UDA told the him that the armaments “constitute the totality of those under their control.”
The decommissioning was also observed by independent eyewitnesses, Lord Eames, the former Archbishop of Armagh and Sir George Quigley, the former chairman of the Ulster Bank.
They said: “We were very pleased to have the opportunity to be present at such a significant moment in the course of Northern Ireland’s steady progress towards what can be a far better future for everyone.”
They added that loyalists who have renounced violence and criminality, and who want to help transform their communities, need to be supported.
The move comes more than 15 years after the UDA announced its ceasefire and 12 years after the Independent International Commission on Decommissioning was set up.
A breakaway UDA faction in south east Antrim decommissioned a small quantity of weapons last summer and told General De Chastelain it would also complete the process before the February deadline.
The body which monitors paramilitary activity in Northern Ireland said in its last report the UDA remained effectively split into two distinct groups – the mainstream UDA and the south east Antrim group.
The Independent Monitoring Commission said in November members of both factions remained involved in a range of criminal activity.