More than a hundred guerrilla suspects were rounded up in search and arrest operations Saturday (22 July) as the British Government committed the army to the military defeat of the Provisional Irish Republican Army (I.
GVs Tanks & troops move into estate on search (4 shots)
SVs Bulldozer removing barricade (4 shots)
SCU Whitelaw speaking.
IN: "All of you..."
OUT: "...all of us"
REPORTER: Search operations were carried out in certain areas. And Anders town, which the Army command has long believed to be a centre for the bomb-makers, was one of the first to be chosen. Nearly a full battalion of fusiliers went in there and met some opposition at first. But, by first light they were in uncontested control of the estate. These were the steel and concrete obstructions the IRA had put up to keep the army out of this Roman Catholic estate. The engineers, however, made short work of them....This was one of the operations that mr Whitelaw could point to as part of the Army's counter-offensive and the government's determination to prevent a repetition of what happened yesterday.
WHITELAW: All of you must realise the British Army is here to protect ordinary people's lives and property. we must go after the killers, the bomb makers and the fanatics that mastermind them. The Secretary of State for Defence has given firm orders to this effect. And, you will have seen that the security forces are already intensifying their efforts. This will mean inconvenience, and some ??? for some innocent people who may live in certain areas. No about the Provisional I.R.A. will attempt to make the maximum propaganda out of it. But no-one can now have any sympathy for those who are prepared to kill innocent men, women, and children in cold blood. And so I urge that all of you help the security forces to root out the gunmen and the bombers in your midst. Unless you do, theme is only misery ahead for you, and indeed or all of us."
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BBC reporter Martin Bell reports on the Belfast situation and Mr Whitelaw's statement.
A transcript of Reporter's commentary and Mr Whitelaw's statement follows:
An alternative commentary is also supplied on the following page.
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: More than a hundred guerrilla suspects were rounded up in search and arrest operations Saturday (22 July) as the British Government committed the army to the military defeat of the Provisional Irish Republican Army (I.R.A.).
The army action comes in response to the series of twenty bombings in Belfast that killed eleven people. responsibility for the explosions was claimed by the provisional wing of the Irish Republican Army.
The army began its operations in the early morning with almost a battalion of troops moving into selected areas of Belfast and the nearby town of Portadown. The British Army said large amounts of gelignite, bomb-making equipment, guns, hand-grenades an ammunition had been found.
In his strongest statement since taking over ministerial responsibility for Northern Ireland, Mr William Whitelaw condemned the IRA bombings and made it clear that the army would not rest until the entire leadership of the provisional wing was behind bars.
In a dramatic radio and television broadcast to the people of Northern Ireland, he said: "All of you must realise that the British Army is here to protect ordinary people's lives and property. We must go after the killers, the bomb-makers and the fanatics who mastermind them".
Five more people were killed in overnight shooting incidents, bringing the death toll for the twenty-four hours between Friday and Saturday morning to sixteen.