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Sinn Féin senator suspended for IRA tweet

Máire Devine Image copyright Sinn Fein
Image caption Máire Devine shared an offensive tweet about Irish prison officer Brian Stack, who was killed by the IRA in 1983

Sinn Féin has suspended a senator who shared an offensive tweet about a prison officer murdered by the IRA.

Máire Devine retweeted a tweet calling Brian Stack, who was shot in the back of the neck in 1983, a "sadist".

Sinn Féin chairman Declan Kearney said Ms Devine had been suspended from the party for three months for "unacceptable twitter activity".

"There can be no excuse for the hurt and offence which has been caused to the Stack family," he added.

Speaking after making a report to the Sinn Féin's ruling council, Mr Kearney said: "This is unacceptable behaviour from a Sinn Féin elected representative."

Image caption Brian Stack was shot as he left a boxing match in 1983

The victim's son, Austin Stack, said the tweet was "part of the provisional movement's campaign to blacken my father's name.

"Firstly they murdered him, and now years later they are trying to justify that with these horrendous comments."

Mr Stack called on Sinn Féin to go further and expel Ms Devine.

"There is no place in our democratic institutions for somebody who would support the views expressed in that tweet," he added.

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