Thursday, 19 June 2008

McCanns Are Innocent: Will You Ever Cop On Paddy

Or leave the mountain dew alone, what a load of feckin nonsense.

If this is his idea of the status quo I'm sure glad he doesn't represent me.

By Cormac Murphy

Wednesday June 18 2008

MEP Eoin Ryan has said he does not think anyone believes the McCanns were involved in their daughter Maddie's disappearance.

The Fianna Fail politician was speaking in the wake of a private meeting with Kate and Gerry McCann in Strasbourg.

"They are a very strong couple who are doing everything they possibly can to get their daughter back and to make sure it does not happen to anybody else," Mr Ryan told the Herald.

Referring to previous allegations, he said: "I don't think anyone believes that."

He said those allegations have been "poo-pooed".

The McCanns told Mr Ryan that, of all the letters of support they receive, a third of them come from Ireland.

He was meeting the couple in connection with their campaign for a Europe-wide alert system for abducted children.

They were in Strasbourg yesterday to encourage MEPs to sign up to a declaration they hope will help establish the alert system.


Mr Ryan said, in the Madeleine case, such a system would have meant that if she had been taken across the Portuguese border into Spain, the Spanish authorities would have been notified.

"In places like the US, the system is successful.

"Even if it saves one child's life it is worth doing it.

"It is only when something like this happens (Madeleine's disappearance) that you realise the failings of the systems that are in place," he said.

"We had a group meeting yesterday and we urged everyone to sign up to the declaration," Mr Ryan added.

In a press briefing in Strasbourg, the McCanns reacted angrily to suggestions they abandoned and neglected their daughter on the day she disappeared 14 months ago.

So far 226 MEPs have signed up to the declaration but they need another 167 before July 24 -- the close of the plenary session -- to collect the signatures needed to ensure that their proposal, in the form of a written declaration, is sent to the EU president and published.

Kate McCann said child alert systems in the US and France have been very successful.

But she conceded it was very difficult to know if a Europe-wide system would have helped to recover their daughter when she disappeared.

When asked by a reporter if this was because Madeleine had been alone in the house or perhaps abandoned by her parents who were meeting friends nearby, Ms McCann reacted angrily.

"Madeleine was not alone for a few hours.

"The issue here is that a child has been abducted.

"There is a criminal out there, who is still out there. We need to concentrate on the real issue.

"It does not help going over the issues you have just raised," she said.

- Cormac Murphy

Source Herald ie