Adams denies involvement in murder and urges people to come forward

Gerry Adams has denied any involvement in the death of Jean McConville.

Gerry Adams has denied any involvement in the death of Jean McConville.

The Sinn Fein deputy has come under pressure following last week’s television documentary called The Dissappeared.

The joint RTE-BBC production presented allegations from three different members of the IRA, who suggested that Adams was a senior member of the IRA, with two of them stating that he ordered the execution of Jean McConville, a Protestent mother of 10, whose body was recovered from Shelling Hill beach in 2003.

There have been suggestions that Adams should resign his position in the Dáil, and that the Sinn Fein’s party image is itself being damaged by its president’s alleged paramilitary legacy.

However, such a move is extremely unlikely, although he may soon step down as party leader.

Commenting on the programme Deputy Adams said: “The story of the disappeared is one of the great tragedies of the conflict.

“I have met all of the families and their pain is real and intense.

“I agreed to participate in the programme to raise awareness of this issue and to assist the search for the remaining bodies. That has been my focus for many years and I intend to honour the commitment I gave to these families to continue with my efforts on this.

“The forensic science consultant Geoff Knupfer, who leads the commission’s forensic team, acknowledged several years ago that the IRA had done everything it could to assist and that they had given 100 per cent support. His colleague Jon Hill acknowledged in July that the information they have been provided with is truthful.

“Key to resolving this terrible wrong for the families is information. I have appealed many times for anyone with information to bring that forward and do so again today. They can give any information they may have to the relevant authority, to myself or to the families.

“I would also appeal to anyone who was previously in touch with the Commission to contact them again on the basis of absolute confidentiality, in order to assist the Commission reassess the information available to it.

“Any information passed to the Commission cannot be used in a court of law or transmitted to any other agency and those passing on this information have absolute immunity in relation to this information,” Deputy Adams said.

The Louth Deputy has flown to the US this week where he has been speaking at a number of high profile fundraisers for Sinn Fein as the party reportedly builds up its coffers for the 2014 Local Elections