Newstalk
Newstalk

10.43 24 May 2013


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Sinn Fein has lodged a formal complaint with the BBC after the parties Education Minister in Northern Ireland John O'Dowd was designated a spokesman for SF/IRA during an appearance on Question Time last night.

The label was part of the floor plan which was pinned to a camera. Mr. O'Dowd says for the BBC to adopt the SF/IRA tag 20 years into a peace process is beyond belief.

He is looking for an immediate explanation from the BBC.

Speaking this morning Mr. O'Dowd said "Last night I had agreed to take part in the Question Time program on the basis of respect and equality. After the program was finished I was made aware of the floor plan pinned to a camera branding me a member of 'SF/IRA!'. This was not on the floor plan previously shown to me before filming".

He described this as a serious issue, saying adding "the 'SF/IRA' tag was one created at the height of the unionist murder campaign against my party colleagues in the late 1980s and early 1990s. It was an attempt to justify attacks on Sinn Fein members and our families. For the BBC to adopt the tag 20 years into a peace process is beyond belief".

The party say they are awaiting a response with interest.


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