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Alan Dukes apologies for 'hurtful' comments about people in border counties

Dec 1, 2022 18:12 By News Northern Sound
Alan Dukes apologies for 'hurtful' comments about people in border counties Alan Dukes apologies for 'hurtful' comments about people in border counties
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The former chairman of the IBRC Alan Dukes has "apologised unreservedly" for comments he made about people living in border counties. During a documentary about businessman Sean Quinn, Mr Dukes claimed "they turn to violence more easily".

Justice Minister and Cavan Monaghan TD Heather Humphreys said those communities stood up against violence for years - despite suffering the most from the actions of terrorists and criminals.

Mr Dukes, who's a former Fine Gael leader, said the comments were unjustified and offended a lot of people. Meanwhile, local TDs have condemned the comments and highlighted the importance of Mr Duke's apology.

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Deputy Niamh Smyth told Northern Sound the comments were "disrespectful and in very poor taste". She added the overall tone was insulting and offensive to the vast majority of people who rejected and abhorred the atrocities committed both sides of the border by a very small minority.

Deputy Brendan Smith added the comments were "outrageous and completely dismissive" of the overwhelming majority of decent people in counties Cavan and Monaghan and the wider border region who abhor violence of any kind and have stood against it over decades.

"I am, like many others in the Cavan-Monaghan region, outraged by the ill-informed comments made by Mr Dukes. What he said last night is the very definition of tarring everyone with the same brush.

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"To say that border people turn to violence more easily than anyone else is an atrocious comment to make. Those of us living in border communities were also victims of violence throughout the Troubles. Our communities have been victims of intimidation and threatening behaviour from a small minority of criminals," he said.

And, Sinn Fein TD for Cavan and Monaghan, Matt Carthy called on Mr Dukes to apologise immediately for what he described as "hurtful and offensive" remarks. He added that the border communities were made up of hard-working people who are proud of who they are and where they are from, and they will not stand for such disgraceful demonisation.

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