Sinn Féin President Mary Lou McDonald TD has expressed deep sadness at the death of Belfast republican Bobby Storey.
“It was with deep sadness that I learned today of the death of Bobby Storey.
“Bobby was a lifelong and very deeply committed Irish Republican whose passing will be received with great sadness by republicans throughout Ireland.
“Bobby was involved in republican activism for over forty years and suffered great hardship for his selfless dedication to his republican ideals.
“Born in Belfast, into a deeply sectarian state, Bobby, from a very young age, was the target of harassment by the British Army and RUC and spent over 20 years in prison, much of it on remand.
“He was interned without trial at just seventeen years of age, by which time he had been repeatedly arrested, brutalised and assaulted by members of the British army.
“Bobby was in Long Kesh internment camp when it was burned down and when prisoners were subjected to brutal attacks by the British military.
“A participant in the 1983 escape of political prisoners from the H-Blocks of Long Kesh, he was captured soon afterwards and spent more years in jail.
“A champion of the peace process, following his release from prison, Bobby played a prominent role in the development of Sinn Féin, serving as Chairperson of Sinn Féin in Belfast and then Chairperson of the party’s Six County Cúige.
“Bobby was extremely committed to the pursuit of a United Ireland with equality and social justice for all. He will be greatly missed.
‘Today we have lost a great Republican. His loss will be felt by all who had the privilege to call him their friend
“On behalf of Sinn Féin I wish to extend my condolences and deepest sympathies to Bobby’s much loved partner Teresa, their children and grandchildren, his brothers Seamus and Brian, sister Geraldine and their many friends and comrades across Ireland.
“Ní bheidh a leithéid arís ann.”