A Sinn Fein councillor wrote on a forum that 'Britain can be bought by Irish Republican Army (IRA) bombs.'

Councillor Michael McIvor, the Sinn Fein councillor for Ballinderry on Cookstown District Council, said: "The handlers like their handlers- how else did the Provos (Provisional IRA) devastate London and Manchester with one tonne bombs in 1996- and then the talks just happened- Brits be bought."

His comment is in direct reference to the Canary Wharf bombing, which occurred on 9th February 1996, when the Provisional IRA detonated a powerful truck bomb in Canary Wharf, causing £150 million worth of damage. It also injured one-hundred people and killed two.

They then later bombed Manchester on 15th June 1996, when the Provisional IRA detonated a 1,500-kilogram bomb on Corporation Street in Manchester City Centre. Seventy-five thousand people were evacuated and two-hundred were injured, but there were no fatalities.

John Major, who was prime minister at the time, continued to engage in talks with all the main political parties in Northern Ireland, excluding Sinn Fein, due to their failure to support the government's position that the Provisional IRA disband their weapons prior to entering peace talks.

"Desist from the tribal 'eye poke' politics"

His remark has provoked anger among many Northern Irish Conservatives. East Belfast Conservative Association told Blasting News: "Our position is that all the legacy parties in Northern Ireland need to focus on getting the Northern Ireland Executive up and running and to deliver for all the people of Northern Ireland and desist from the tribal 'eye poke' Politics."

Councillor McIvor also made other outspoken comments on this forum.

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He said: "Stormont has been down for a year and the upsurge of dissident activity never happened. Media got it wrong again- no Brits or cops were killed last year and indeed, the three dissident armed groups that are still active (New Co, New ONH and the Continuity IRA) have never killed one Brit or soldier in their combined forty plus years of being active.

"These are Brit-run- just interested in putting out anti-Sinn Fein statements. Loyalists are also busy selling e-taps to do anything else, but only sell and shoot each other."

His post comes in direct contradiction of what happened on 9th March 2009, when the Continuity IRA shot dead Police Service for Northern Ireland (PSNI) Constable Stephen Carroll.

The Ballinderry councillor defended Barry McElduff, the Sinn Fein MP who posted a controversial video mocking victims of the Kingsmill massacre on 5th January 1976.

"McElduff was back working in the Sinn Fein office yesterday"

He posted: "McElduff was back working in the Sinn Fein office yesterday for his constituents- you not read today's front cover of the Irish News- I will be okay also."

Councillor McIvor made this post despite knowing Mr. McElduff resigned his West Tyrone seat on 16th January 2018.

The Sinn Fein councillor defended the former MP's Kingsmill video by saying: "Sinn Fein tried to break bread with the unionists for years, but they weren't interested. But now they are interested in this loaf."

He added: "It was a good week for Sinn Fein- if you are still surviving, then there is no such thing as 'bad' news- everyone is talking about the Shinners."

Northern Irish Conservative activist Gary Hynds said: "This is just once again a sick and twisted comment from a sick and twisted individual. Innocent victims are broken-hearted enough over what they went through, yet all this person can think of is how it was a 'good week for Sinn Fein,' because everyone was talking about Sinn Fein, not a care about what victims went through.

"I am sick of dinosaurs like this dragging Northern Ireland down continually. People like this need to be removed from their positions and replaced with people who are not full of poison. Sadly, I fear the poison runs deep throughout Sinn Fein.

"If Sinn Fein expect people to work with them, they need to get their own house in order. They use words like respect and equality, but continually have representatives for their party show zero respect and equality towards innocent victims of IRA murder and violence."

A Sinn Fein spokesperon was approached for comment, but declined to do so.