UK's Prince Charles to meet Sinn Fein's Gerry Adams for first time

Reuters News
Posted: May 19, 2015 3:36 AM

DUBLIN (Reuters) - Britain's Prince Charles is to meet Gerry Adams in Ireland on Tuesday, the first time the leader of the former political wing of the Irish Republican Army (IRA) has met a senior member of the royal family, his Sinn Fein party said.

The meeting is to take place in the west of Ireland city of Galway a day before Charles visits the nearby site where the IRA murdered his uncle Lord Mountbatten in 1979.

Charles has long been a figure of hate among Irish nationalists due to his position as Colonel-in-Chief of the British Army's Parachute Regiment, which was involved in a number of shooting of Irish Catholics in Northern Ireland.

Charles' mother Queen Elizabeth in 2012 met Martin McGuinness, a former IRA commander and a senior member of Sinn Fein, a meeting seen as a landmark step in reconciliation in Northern Ireland.

Northern Ireland has been largely peaceful since a 1998 power sharing deal ended three decades of violence between Protestants who want to remain loyal to the British crown and Catholics favoring unification with Ireland.

(Reporting by Conor Humphries; editing by Michael Holden)