Taoiseach to name date for discussion of issues raised in Maíria Cahill case

Taoiseach to name date for discussion of issues raised in Maíria Cahill case
Maíria Cahill

Politicians are waiting for a date to discuss the Maíria Cahill abuse allegations, after the Taoiseach confirmed yesterday that the Dáil would set aside time to debate the issues raised by her experiences.

Mairia Cahill claims that a leading Republican raped her in 1997 when she was 16. She says Sinn Féin knew about her rape, covered it up and held its own inquiry into the case which brought her face-to-face with her alleged attacker.

She says she discussed the abuse with Gerry Adams. She has alleged Mr Adams told her abusers could be so manipulative that the people being abused actually enjoyed the abuse, which he has strongly denied.

Four other Republicans also deny they were involved in covering up the abuse, and issued a statement last night to defend their reputations.

Padraic Wilson, Seamus Finucane, Briege Wright and Maura McCrory were all named by Mairia Cahill as having a role in covering up her alleged abuse by a senior IRA member.

In the statement, their solicitor said the claims made against them were untrue, and that all four were acquitted of the claims in court, although their acquittals have been "ignored or devalued".

It said the four did not accept Ms Cahill's account of events, and that the case against them collapsed when Mairia Cahill decided not to give evidence in court, or allow herself to be cross-examined.

"In any normal society," it says, the acquittals "would be the end of the matter" - but in this case, it says the rule of law has been "subverted by the ongoing trial by the media".

The statement follows a meeting between Ms Cahill and Taoiseach Enda Kenny earlier yesterday where Ms Cahill repeated her claims, and also accused the IRA of moving alleged sex abusers to the Republic to escape sanction in the North.

After that meeting, he described her as a "courageous, confident and brave young woman, who is a force to be reckoned with".

(Enda Kenny's comments begin at 3.55)


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