The Irish Republican Army leader's wife, Mrs. Mary MacStiofain, yesterday (Monday) met the press at?
SCU Mrs MacStiofain PULL OUT TO SV showing IRA leaders
CU PAN from Mary MacStiofain (daughter) to Rather Pearse Doyle, Rory O'Bradaugh, Mrs. MacStiofain and David O'Connell
CU Mrs. MacStiofain speaks
MRS. MacSTIOFAIN. "I was about to enter the corridor of my husband's ward when I was told that he wasn't there. And he had been swept - literally swept - out of that room in a matter of five minutes. Seen, as I'm sure you all know, is practically a dying man. Mentally he was perfect, physically he was quite incapable of movement - but even then, one of the staff told me that he put up a marvellous struggle."
REPORTER (Off Camera): "Now, I'm sorry to interrupt you, this telegram came from Bobby Kennedy..."
MRS. MacSTIOFAIN: "Bobby Kennedy..."
REPORTER: "Which Kennedy..."
MRS. MacSTIOFAIN: "...and Joseph Kennedy."
REPORTER: "Which is Bobby Kennedy? I'm sorry, I'm not quite clear..."
VOICES: "He's the son... He's the son of Robert Kennedy."
REPORTER: "If the doctors had asked for your permission to feed him intravenously, would you have given that permission?"
MRS. MacSTIOFAIN: "I shall never go against my husband's principles. If my husband was prepared to die, and make that sacrifice for his country, I will also want to respect those wishes."
Initials ESP/1715 ESP/1728
This film includes reference to the fact that Mrs. MacStiofain received telegrams of support purporting to be from Bobby and Joseph Kennedy, sons of the late Senator Robert Kennedy of the USA. The Kennedy family have since disclaimed responsibility for the messages.
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: The Irish Republican Army leader's wife, Mrs. Mary MacStiofain, yesterday (Monday) met the press at a conference organised by the legal IRA in Dublin. She described the circumstances in which her husband, IRA Chief of Staff Sean MacStiofain, was taken by helicopter to an army camp at Curragh from the hospital where he was under observation.
Mr MacStiofain is on hunger-strike, and says he will not eat while he remains in custody. He was sentenced to six months' jail for belonging to the IRA, in a trial which was seen by observers as a sign that Eire's Premier Jack Lynch has decided to get tough with the IRA.
The illegal organisation had been operating openly in the Republic, and it was an open secret that its leaders operated a headquarters in Dublin from which they directed their campaign of bombing and shooting in Northern Ireland.