‘DRIFT and mission creep’ among dissident republicans should not be underestimated, according to Londonderry MP Mark Durkan.
He explained to the House of Commons how Republican Action Against Drugs (RAAD) have switched from not ‘disagree(ing) with the overall political project’ to ‘disagreeing with the overall political project.’
Speaking during a debate on the security situation he commented: “We have had different brands of dissident. Some, such as those in RAAD were seen for a number of years as policing dissidents, rather than political dissidents, as they did not disagree with the overall political project.
“Now they are disagreeing with the overall political project. They are finding each other and getting together, so there is some drift or mission creep among dissidents and we should not underestimate that.”
He issued a rallying cry to democrats to stand together in the face of the dissident threat.
“Just as the dissidents are getting together, we as democrats should show that we stand together in our political institutions. Whatever political differences we might air in the Assembly, in the Chamber today or anywhere else, they must see us standing shoulder to shoulder behind the democratic opportunities mandated by the Irish people north and south, unionist and nationalist,” he said.
“We do not pretend that our problems are all behind us; the opportunities are all ahead of us and we can seize them by working and standing together,” he added.