Gerry Adams dismisses public’s belief that he was in IRA

Sinn Féin leader Gerry Adams has brushed aside a poll showing nine out of 10 people do not believe him when he says he was never in the IRA.

Only 4% of voters accept Mr Adams’ version of events, with 89% disbelieving him, and 7% saying they did not know, according to a survey for RTÉ’s Claire Byrne Live by Amarách Research.

However, respondents were split on whether it mattered whether Mr Adams was in the IRA or not, with 47% saying it did, and 45% saying it did not.

Mr Adams said the people who disbelieved him were wrong, and that he did not believe the matter was an issue of concern to unionists.

Asked what he would say to the 89% who do not believe him, Mr Adams said: “I don’t say anything to them.I say vote for Sinn Féin in the next general election, I say vote for Sinn Féin to continue our work in the peace process.

“Have whatever position you want on me, but ensure that what this government has done for the last four years in this State is not repeated after this next election and that we’re not all fooled again.”

Mr Adams said last year that he was “relaxed” that a poll found a majority of Sinn Féin voters did not believe his claims to never have been in the IRA.

Mr Adams said in a television interview in the United States earlier this year that he had never ordered a murder or pulled a trigger.

The Sinn Féin leader used the interview to deny any involvement in the abduction and murder of mother of 10 Jean McConville.

Pressed on the infamous killing, Mr Adams said: “That’s what happens in war. That’s not to minimise it. That’s what American soldiers do, British soldiers do, Irish republican soldiers do. That’s what happens in every single conflict.”

Mr Adams also again denied being part of the IRA, stating: “I don’t disassociate myself from the IRA. I think the IRA was a legitimate response to what was happening here. But I was not a member of the IRA.”

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