State papers reveal alleged plot to 'execute' Charles Haughey

The newly released papers also reveal the relationship between Mr Haughey and Margaret Thatcher


State papers at National Archives. Photo: Sam Boal/

14:16 29 Dec 2017 Newstalk 14:16 Friday 29 December 2017

An alleged MI5 plot to kill former Taoiseach Charles Haughey has been revealed in state papers from 1987 released today.

They also show that then British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher feared the IRA would kill a member of the royal family.

Elsewhere, the papers reveal that the then Bishop of Derry Edward Daly believed Martin McGuinness personally arranged a meeting with an IRA informer who was shot dead in 1986.

Ed Carty, journalist with the Press Association, described the alleged plot to 'execute' Charles Haughey.

He told The Pat Kenny Show: "[The warning] was on headed notepaper, of all things, from the UVF, signed by a Captain William Johnson - that would have been the name all UVF statements were signed by.

"It claims that they were approached by MI5 - that they wanted Haughey assassinated, and if they did carry out the operation would the UVF claim responsibility for it."

Ed explained that the papers also reveal the relationship between Mr Haughey and Mrs Thatcher.

He observed: "He was warned about Thatcher's propensity to preach, that she had a self-righteous attitude.

"He was essentially being told to be careful - to balance the need to defend the Irish position, while at the same time displaying patience so as not to push Thatcher too hard."