HL Deb 22 May 2002 vol 635 cc108-9WA
Lord Laird

asked Her Majesty's Government:

Whether involvement in the international drug trade on the part of a paramilitary organisation is compatible with being on ceasefire; and [HL4016]

What they consider is meant by the expression "ceasefire"; and [HL4082]

Whether they will define in the Northern Ireland context what they understand by the concept of an organisation which is considered to be no longer on ceasefire. [HL4108]

Lord Williams of Mostyn

Section 3(8) of the Northern Ireland (Sentences) Act 1998 requires the Secretary of State to specify any organisation which he believes (a) is concerned with terrorism in connection with the affairs of Northern Ireland or in promoting or encouraging it; and (b) has not established or is not maintaining a complete and unequivocal ceasefire. The meaning of terrorism for the purposes of the Act is defined in Section 13. No definition is given for ceasefire, but Section 3(9) lists four considerations which the Secretary of State must take into account in judging whether a complete and unequivocal ceasefire is being maintained. My right honourable friend the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland will continue to endeavour to meet the obligations placed on him by the legislation as interpreted by the courts.