By Theo Russell
SINN FÉIN MPs Michelle Gildernew and Conor Murphy visited London last week for a highly successful, and sold out, dinner at the Troia restaurant near the London Eye organised by Friends of Sinn Féin to mark the 15th anniversary of the Good Friday Agreement.
The event was shared by many international friends, including the Cuban Ambassador and representatives from the Venezuelan Embassy, the Kurdish National Congress, the Basque nationalist Eusko Alkartasuna party, the Wolfe Tone Society and the Connolly Association.
Speaking briefly to the guests Michelle Gildernew said there was much unfinished business left over from the Good Friday Agreement on the equality agenda and power-sharing, and said that Sinn Féin is now officially calling for an Ireland-wide poll on whether to remove the border as provided for in the 1998 agreement.
She also spoke about the campaign to pressure the Dublin government to extend the vote in Irish elections to members of the large Irish diaspora in Britain and elsewhere.
Conor Murphy described the ongoing work by Sinn Féin to build relations with the Unionist community in the north of Ireland, saying that “Unionists need to realise that they have a better future as a large part of the Irish people than they have hanging on to a British government which doesn’t particularly care about them.”
The MPs also reminded the gathering of a major London conference coming up in October to be addressed by Sinn Féin President Gerry Adams, Towards a New Ireland.
An excellent time was had by all, with superb Turkish food and traditional Irish tunes (and the odd rebel song) by musicians from the North London band The Popes. The evening was a welcome distraction from the seemingly endless depression of Austerity Britain.