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Fellow politicians react to the death of Martin McGuinness

Martin McGuinness will be “fondly remembered” by republicans in Dublin according to Aengus Ó Snodaigh, Sinn Féin TD for the Liberties area.

The former Northern Ireland deputy first minister passed away on Tuesday at the age of 66 after a period of ill health.

“I am very saddened with the passing of my friend and colleague Martin McGuinness,” said Mr Ó Snodaigh. “I have known Martin since the early 1980s and he was a tower of strength and a wealth of knowledge for me in the party.”

Mr McGuinness was one of the most prominent members of the IRA during the height of the Troubles in Northern Ireland, and also played a hugely pivotal role in securing peace on the island in his later years.

Martin McGuinness //Wikipedia

Martin McGuinness //Wikipedia

“He was a genius when it came to peace negotiations,” recalled Mr Ó Snodaigh, “and I enjoyed the few sessions of those negotiations that I was involved in all the more because of his skills and his ability to ensure we all had our say.”

“He was always encouraging young republicans and those of us that stood in elections over the years, and last year he unveiled the bust of war poet and Irish nationalist Francis Ledwidge at Richmond Barracks in Inchicore,” said the Sinn Fein party whip.

These sentiments were echoed by Sinn Féin councillor Greg Kelly, who said Mr McGuinness will be missed after waking up to the news this morning.

“I have been lucky to have met him and been in his company on a number of occasions,” said Mr Kelly, “and I’m proud to have been a comrade of his. Martin was a giant among men but always had time for a few words whenever I saw him.”

Mr Kelly continued by saying that Martin McGuinness will be “missed by all in Sinn Féin. He was our leader and someone we looked up to.”

“Martin was a soldier, a politician, a statesman, a leader and a family man.”

The name of Martin McGuinness will be forever linked with that of his political partner and friend Gerry Adams, who said in a statement released on Tuesday that “Martin will be sorely missed by all who knew him”.

“Throughout his life, Martin showed great determination, dignity and humility and it was no different during his short illness,” said Mr Adams.

“He was a passionate republican who worked tirelessly for peace and reconciliation and for the reunification of his country.  But above all, he loved his family and the people of Derry and he was immensely proud of both.”

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