HC Deb 28 April 2004 vol 420 c1117W
14. David Burnside

To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland if he will make a statement on criminal activities by the Provisional IRA in(a) Northern Ireland, (b) the Republic of Ireland and (c) internationally in the last 12 months. [167673]

Mr. Pearson

The Independent Monitoring Commission's first report, published on 20 April, provided a clear assessment of the criminal activities of the Provisional IRA. The Organised Crime Task Force has also undertaken detailed analysis and its appraisal is that the Provisional IRA is engaged in serious and organised crime, including large-scale smuggling and counterfeiting operations. There is no question that Northern Ireland based organised criminals engage in activities outside Northern Ireland.

The political process cannot flourish while the threat of paramilitarism persists and I call on all groups to end paramilitary and criminal activity.