ALLIANCE MLA Seamus Close has welcomed the closure of a website selling Real IRA T-shirts and other memorabilia glorifying terrorism. The site, which used redesigned Celtic, Nike and UEFA logos to promote the Real IRA, stated it is intended to be seen as a joke. However, the items on sale were freely available to buy from the USA over the internet.
Among the items on sale were an AK-47 thong and a ‘RIRA Belfast Brigade’ lunchbox. The Real IRA used a booby trap bomb in a lunch box to murder builder David Caldwell in Derry in August 2002.
Following up on a constituent’s complaint, Mr Close said:
“This website might have started as a joke, but it is a very sick one. To glorify terrorism in this way is demeaning to the victims of violence. But to offer a RIRA lunch box for sale after having used one to disguise a booby trap bomb that killed a civilian is simply disgusting. You would think after the furore over the Sinn Fein website that lessons would have been learned.
“Alliance has informed two of the firms whose logos have been plagiarised on this site; Coca Cola, which has a base in my own constituency, and Celtic FC. As a result of Alliance’s action, this loathsome website’s has been removed from the internet.
“Alliance received a call this morning from Celtic thanking us for alerting them to the website. They made it quite clear they are opposed to the use of their logos being used to support any form of terrorism.”
While the site is now down, Alliance has retained printouts of the site.