Republican Dissidents Join Forces to Form a New IRA
A masked member of the Real IRA at a republican Easter commemoration ceremony in Derry. The Real IRA is merging with other dissident groups in an escalation of the threat of violence against security forces. Photograph: Niall Carson/PA
Three of the four main dissident republican terror groups in Northern Ireland are to merge and reclaim the banner of the IRA, in an escalation of attempts to de-stabilise power sharing.
The Real IRA has been joined by Republican Action Against Drugs, which has been running a violent vigilante campaign in Derry, and a coalition of independent armed republican groups - leaving only the Continuity IRA outside the new group.
In a statement released to the Guardian, the new organisation claimed it had formed a “unified structure, under a single leadership”. It said the organisation would be “subservient to the constitution of the Irish Republican Army”.