Irish Republican Prisoners - Political Detainees, Prisoners of War or Common Criminals?
Irish Jurist (l984) xix: 189-225
37 Pages Posted: 14 Aug 2017
Date Written: August 09, 1983
Having refused to conceptualize the campaign of violence in Northern Ireland as anything so grand as to be entitled a war, rebellion or insurrection, the U.K. Government has assimilated the illegal activities engaged in by I.R.A. volunteers to the crimes committed by "ordinary" criminals. In short, the present official strategy has moved increasingly, though not exclusively, towards the criminalisation of terrorist activity. The paper examines: the history of claims to special status; the testing of claims to "special category" or "political" status; the testing of quasi-legal claims to ""prisoner of conscience" status; the testing of claims to special treatment based on the political offence exception to extradition; the testing of claims to special treatment based on the European Convention of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms; the testing of claims to prisoner-of-war status under the law of armed conflict.
Keywords: Irish republicanism; prison protest; hunger strike; terrorism
JEL Classification: K10, K14, K33, K19, K30, K33, K42, N40
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation