Last Updated: Thursday, 24 April 2014, 11:39 GMT

United Kingdom/Northern Ireland: Information on the 30 January 1996 death of Irish National Liberation Army member Gino Gallagher in Belfast, and on whether there has been any suggestions on the identity of the assassin

Publisher Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada
Author Research Directorate, Immigration and Refugee Board, Canada
Publication Date 1 February 1996
Citation / Document Symbol IRL23203.E
Cite as Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada, United Kingdom/Northern Ireland: Information on the 30 January 1996 death of Irish National Liberation Army member Gino Gallagher in Belfast, and on whether there has been any suggestions on the identity of the assassin, 1 February 1996, IRL23203.E, available at: http://www.refworld.org/docid/3ae6acc88.html [accessed 25 April 2014]
DisclaimerThis is not a UNHCR publication. UNHCR is not responsible for, nor does it necessarily endorse, its content. Any views expressed are solely those of the author or publisher and do not necessarily reflect those of UNHCR, the United Nations or its Member States.

 

According to the attached 31 January 1996 Daily Telegraph article, Gino Gallagher, "the alleged leader" of the Irish National Liberation Army (INLA), was shot dead in Belfast on 30 January 1996 as he signed on for unemployment benefit. ... Mr. Gallagher ... was ambushed by a lone gunman who was waiting for him inside a social security office off the Falls Road. He was hit several times in the head and body.

The article adds that "there were suggestions ... that Gallagher had taken over as chief-of-staff of the INLA a few months ago" (ibid.).

A 3 February 1996 Irish Times article states that "a man was being questioned by the RUC [police] last night in connection with Tuesday's killing in Belfast of the INLA chief of staff, Gino Gallagher." The article adds that

at least one other man arrested in connection with the killing has since been released without charge. The man in custody is said to be connected to an INLA faction which was in dispute with Mr. Gallagher (ibid.).

While providing information on the assassination of Gino Gallagher, the following articles refer to different groups as possible forces behind the assassination. According to The Irish Times,

no group has claimed responsibility for the killing, but there is speculation that the IRA, elements of British intelligence or disgruntled former INLA members could have been involved (31 Jan. 1996).

Referring to a police claim that contends Gallagher was the victim of an internal INLA feud, Evening Standard reports that the INLA "denied there were any splits and blamed the assassination on outside Republican elements" (2 Feb. 1996).

The Des Moines Register maintains that

no one has claimed responsibility for the killing, widely suspected to be the work of rivals in Gallagher's outlawed Irish National Liberation Army. A splinter group of the Irish Republican Army and an opponent of the IRA ceasfire, the group has a history of violent internal feuds (2 Feb. 1996).

A 30 January 1996 Reuters report refers to unspecified leaders of the Irish Republican Socialist Party, the INLA's political wing, who said that the assassination of Gallagher was "political and suited several anti-left wing groups, including British intelligence." The party denied the claim that the assassination was a result of an internal feud (ibid.).

According to The Irish Times, the IRA has denied any involvement in the assassination (3 Feb. 1996).

The attached Daily Telegraph (3 Feb. 1996), Gazette (2 Feb. 1996) and Irish Times (3 Feb. 1996) articles provide information on the funeral of Gino Gallagher.

This Response was prepared after researching publicly accessible information currently available to the DIRB within time constraints. This Response is not, and does not purport to be, conclusive as to the merit of any particular claim to refugee status or asylum.

References

        The Daily Telegraph [London]. 31 January 1996. Richard Savill. "INLA Chief Is Shot Dead in Dole Office." (NEXISx)

The Des Moines Register. 2 February 1996. "Mourners, Police Clash after Funeral; The Leader of an Outlawed Irish Paramilitary Group was Gunned Down, Fueling Already High Tensions." (NEXIS)

Evening Standard [London]. 2 February 1996. "New Bid to Halt Funeral." (NEXIS)

The Irish Times [Belfast]. 3 February 1996. City Edition. Gerry Moriarty. "Man Questioned on INLA Chief's Killing." (NEXIS)

_____. 31 January 1996. City Edition. Suzanne Breen. "INLA Pledges to Exact Revenge after the Murder of its Leader." (NEXIS)

Reuters. 30 January 1996. BC Cycle. Martin Cowley. "Top Irish Guerrilla Shot, Allies say no Feud." (NEXIS)

Attachments

        The Daily Telegraph [London]. 3 February 1996. Richard Savill and Philip Johnston. "IRA Blamed as Shooting Breaks Truce Outrage at Attack on RUC Couple." (NEXIS)

_____. 31 January 1996. Richard Savill. "INLA Chief Is Shot Dead in Dole Office." (NEXIS)

The Des Moines Register. 2 February 1996. "Mourners, Police Clash after Funeral; The Leader of an Outlawed Irish Paramilitary Group was Gunned Down, Fueling Already High Tensions." (NEXIS)

The Gazette [Montreal]. 2 February 1996. Final Edition. "Clash Postpones Burial." (NEXIS)

The Evening Standard [London]. 2 February 1996. "New Bid to Halt Funeral." (NEXIS)

The Irish Times [Belfast]. 3 February 1996. City Edition. Suzanne Breen. "Gallagher is Buried with Military Regalia." (NEXIS)

_____. 3 February 1996. City Edition. Gerry Moriarty. "Man Questioned on INLA Chief's Killing." (NEXIS)

_____. 31 January 1996. City Edition. Suzanne Breen. "INLA Pledges to Exact Revenge after the Murder of its Leader." (NEXIS)

Reuters. 30 January 1996. BC Cycle. Martin Cowley. "Top Irish Guerrilla Shot, Allies say no Feud." (NEXIS)

Copyright notice: This document is published with the permission of the copyright holder and producer Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada (IRB). The original version of this document may be found on the offical website of the IRB at http://www.irb-cisr.gc.ca/en/. Documents earlier than 2003 may be found only on Refworld.

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