Red Youth delegation returns from Derry

Comrades from Red Youth and the CPGB-ML have returned from a short delegation to Derry. Comrades were taken on a tour of the Bogside and other nationalist communities, and to a number of important Republican memorials and were able to hold discussions with comrades and friends from Sinn Fein, Sinn Fein Republican Youth and meet others from the wider republican family. The warmth and cameraderie of the visit was matched only by the insights into the practical organisational work undertaken by these comrades and the delegation learnt many lessons which it can take back to Britain in our work here.

Solidarity with the Irish people’s struggle for self determination has been a hallmark of the work of the CPGB-ML since its inception, and has been taken up by the youth since the formation of Red Youth in 2010. The following motion was passed at the 2010 Congress of the CPGB-ML:

Ireland

Congress reaffirms our solidarity with the struggle of the Irish people for self-determination, independence and reunification, as expressed at our founding congress and subsequently. The Irish people have struggled for centuries to restore their legitimate national rights and still do so today. Their unyielding spirit in the face of overwhelming odds has inspired freedom fighters throughout the world and continues to do so.

Through a masterful combination of political and armed struggle, the Irish people, led by the republican movement, forced the incomparably stronger forces of British imperialism into a state of strategic stalemate. Since then, Sinn Fein has skilfully built on the gains of the previous period of struggle to advance a political process aimed at reconciling the historic antagonisms fostered between Irish people by British imperialism through its strategy of ‘divide and rule’.

Congress welcomes the further step towards a united Ireland represented by the Hillsborough Castle Agreement (HCA) signed on 5 February 2010. This agreement, effective from 12 April, transfers the control of policing and justice in the six counties from British to Irish soil, brings parades legislation under local control and clears the way for the long-awaited implementation of the Good Friday and St Andrew’s agreements.

This tactical achievement is the fruit of lengthy political struggle led by Sinn Fein, whose growing political strength both in the occupied north east and in the rest of the country has obliged even the hard-line unionist sectarians of the DUP (Democratic Unionist Party) to bow to the inevitable. That is why the DUP dropped their arbitrary precondition that the Orange Order be given carte blanche to march up the Garvaghy Road – only the latest in a long line of delaying tactics dreamed up by these unionist diehards, doubtless encouraged in their pathetic obstinacy by reactionaries in the Northern Ireland Office itself.

Congress reiterates the demand that British imperialism and its unionist stooges stop all further foot dragging and immediately and fully implement all provisions of the Good Friday and St Andrew’s agreements as a step towards full British withdrawal from Ireland and the affairs of the Irish people, national reunification and independence.

It is well known that Karl Marx and Frederick Engels repeatedly taught that the British working class must support the Irish not only as a matter of justice for Ireland but above all in their own class interest. It absolutely remains the case that the British proletariat will remain slaves to capital unless and until they learn to support the struggle of the Irish, the Iraqis, the Afghans, the Palestinians and every other oppressed nation that rises up to challenge imperialist domination.

For that reason, our party will continue to support and campaign with Irish community and anti-imperialist organisations standing for national reunification and an end to British interference in Irish affairs, including the Wolfe Tone Society and the Troops Out Movement. In particular, we will support the international campaign to “put Irish unity on the agenda”, which Sinn Fein has launched in Canada, the USA and Britain in recent widely supported rallies.”

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