éirígí general secretary Breandán MacCionnaith has expressed deep concern at the activities of the British army in Fermanagh after it emerged they had been involved in the recent harassment of people in the county.
On the night of June 24, two local men were stopped, held and assaulted at a checkpoint manned by the PSNI and other, unidentified, armed men. Those unidentified armed men were traveling in unmarked civilian vehicles. The next day, the men were arrested under so-called anti-terrorism legislation, while much of the rural area of Boho was locked down as houses were raided and farm land sealed off. The men were later release without charge.
Now, independent republican councilor in Fermanagh Bernice Swift has revealed that she has been directed to go through the British army in her attempts to get compensation for Boho residents whose property was damaged during the Crown Forces' operation.
MacCionnaith said: "There was a lot of hype surrounding the ending of the British army's Operation Banner in the Six Counties in 2007. At the time, it was proclaimed by many people that this was effectively the end of the British army's involvement in Ireland."
"Yet, two years later, the British army is in County Fermanagh setting up road blocks, assaulting people, raiding homes and denying people access to their places of work. The British army's involvement in Ireland is obviously not at an end. This is why Operation Banner was replaced by Operation Helvetic."
"A number of months ago, Hugh Orde announced that the British army's Special Reconnaissance Regiment was again, if it had ever gone away, operating in the Six Counties. The incident in Fermanagh provides ample evidence that the PSNI are working hand in glove with these regiments."
MacCionnaith continued: "The nationalist representatives on the Six County Policing Board who found themselves impotent in the face of Hugh Orde's SRR announcement need to face up to the facts. The PSNI is not a civic police service and never will be - in areas like Fermanagh, it is actively colluding with the British army in operations against nationalist communities."
He concluded: "On August 8, éirígí will be making it clear that the British army and their colleagues in the PSNI are not welcome in County Fermanagh or any other part of Ireland."
éirígí will be holding a demonstration at Enniskillen PSNI Barracks on Saturday, August 8 to mark the 38th anniversary of internment and to protest against the use of plastic bullets and 28-day detention legislation by the PSNI. A demonstration will also be held at the British Embassy in Dublin on the same day.