Brendan Lillis: Action on the bridge of peace in Drogheda

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Duleek Independent Republicans will hold an urgent protest this wednesday evening on the bridge of peace in Drogheda at 7p.m. calling for the immediate release of Brendan Lillis from Maghaberry gaol.

We appeal to all republicans/groups to attend and show your support for Brendan regardless of political beliefs. Please bring along posters and banners highlighting Brendan’s case.

We ask you to forward this to your friends.

Friends of Brendan Lillis:​s/Friends.Of.Brendan.Lillis?id​=170244766375421&ref=notif&not​if_t=group_activity



Photo: Brendan Lillis  –  Brendan Lillis, a 59 year old former Life-sentence political prisoner from West Belfast, in Ireland, is currently desperately ill in the medical wing of the notorious Maghaberry prison, in County Antrim. He suffers from the intensely painful and progressive disease called Ankylosing Spondylitis which due to other medical complications has left himunable to move from his bed for 14 months and his weight has dropped to a perilous 6 stones (38.1 Kilos !). Due to a series of serious infections and medication which has compromised his immune system, Mr Lillis has been unable to eat, sleep or hold down even liquids for a period close to a month and is constant agony. In short, his health has deteriorated to such an extent that his partner Roisin, who is his only contact with the outside world, fears that he will die in his prison bed!


3 thoughts on “Brendan Lillis: Action on the bridge of peace in Drogheda

  1. kruitvat Post author

    Information, helpful links




    Tuesday, October 12, 2010

    The Irish Freedom Committee has received numerous reports from family members of Irish republican political prisoners in recent days detailing shockingly violent assaults against their loved ones at Maghaberry prison.

    Since the end of September, three republican prisoners have been sadistically and even sexually assaulted by prison guards at Maghaberry’s Roe House, while being forcibly strip searched on their way to court hearings.

    These violent and wholly unwarranted assaults follow the release of a report published to the Northern Ireland Prisons Service website, “TEXT OF AGREEMENT ENDING ROE HOUSE PROTEST” (August 12 2010), detailing concessions made by the prison’s administration to the republican prisoners which specifically outline how the prison was to address numerous human rights abuse complaints at the jail; that had led to months of protest by the prisoners at the jail and thousands of supporters on the outside. The agreement specifically addressed an end to forced strip searching of the prisoners en route to domestic and legal visits.


    On September 23rd, republican POW Brendy Conway was violently assaulted and forcibly strip searched in his cell en route to court by six riot squad members, when he refused to comply with strip search orders per the August 12th agreement. The riot squad beat him so severely Brendy was left in severe chest pain that required urgent medical care and an EKG monitor later that night. He was not allowed out of the transport van to attend his court hearing. Prison guards were heard openly laughing at his injuries and taunting the republican prisoners saying, “Where is your Agreement now.”


    On September 29th another republican prisoner, Damien McLaughlin, was removed from his cell on the false pretext that he had a court appearance. He was ordered to undergo a strip search which he refused, again citing the August 12th prison agreement. He was detained to punishment blocks and returned to his cell, and again ordered to comply with strip search. He refused, and what followed would make any stomach turn.

    In a phone call to a prisoners’ welfare activist soon after the ordeal, Damien described being next forced to the ground by riot squad, who used scissors to cut apart his clothing, which was torn off him. His face was pushed to the concrete floor by a guard who forced his knees against Damien’s neck, as others forced knuckles, knees and feet into pressure points around his body. Once they had him pinned down to the ground, naked, the guards proceeded to video him while making personal remarks. Following this disgusting degradation Damien was then put in a van to a fictitious court appearance, during which time he repeatedly asked for his solicitor but was denied. He was told that his court appearance in Dungannon was ‘cancelled’ and he was then brought back to the jail where a second degrading strip search assault was forced upon him; even though he had been in contact with no other person outside of the guards who were in his presence all the time. Damien was returned to his cell battered, bruised and bleeding from cuts received during the forced search. When a prison doctor finally arrived, Damien stated to that he felt that he had been virtually sexually assaulted in the humiliating forced search and subsequent videoing of him. In Damien’s words, “the doctor laughed and flippantly asked who had sexual intercourse with him.”

  2. kruitvat Post author

    Information, helpful links




    Most recently, on October 12th, republican prisoner Colin Duffy was subjected to further sexual and physical abuse during a forced prison strip-search that left him in “significant pain” after having clothing cut off and being dragged naked across the floor. Colin was forced to appear in court shirtless as his clothes were forcibly removed. The forced strip searching and assaults were repeated again before a second court hearing the following day, and family members reported being shocked at his appearance. While leaving court, Colin’s family was harassed by RUC/PSNI police. When Colin’s solicitors were asked to intervene by the family, police told them to mind their own business. A spokesperson for the Duffy family said, “Such behavior and actions by this force will not deter our family from coming to these courts in support of Colin. We will not be intimidated.” In a phone call to his family later that night Colin reported that on being returned to the jail he was forcibly strip searched again, dragged across the floor naked, and had sustained mouth injuries.


    The Irish Freedom Committee has created a simple Action you can take in five minutes or less.

    1. Print, sign and post the letter posted at the IFC website here: or copy and paste the text that follows in the sample letter linked below. Mail one signed hard copy to each of the offices named on the letter.
    2. US Citizens – Please contact your elected representatives and members of Congress and ask for a delegation of fact-finders to be sent to Maghaberry prison to investigate the human rights violations we have reported.
    3. Go to our Facebook page here and share this action request with friends!
    4. Please WRITE TO THE POWs. For a current list of prisoners go to the Irish Freedom Committee website at and click on POW DEPT or email us at
    5. PLEASE SUPPORT THE FAMILIES of IRISH REPUBLICAN POWs. Watch for the IFC Christmas Drive to be announced soon. Our work has been widely recognized by the families of Irish Republican POWs and former republican political prisoners.


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