Terrorists among participants at Belfast rally to end operation

'Post' learns convicted Irish, Spanish terrorists participated in pro-Palestinian demonstration.

Iranians burn Israeli flags 248.88 (photo credit: AP)
Iranians burn Israeli flags 248.88
(photo credit: AP)
Convicted Irish and Spanish terrorists were among the 2,000 people who participated in a rally in Belfast on Saturday that demanded an end to the conflict in Gaza, The Jerusalem Post has learned. One of those taking part was the IRA's "Brighton Bomber" Patrick Magee, who planted a bomb at Brighton's Grand Hotel in 1984 targeting then-prime minister Margaret Thatcher and her cabinet, which killed two men and three women. Magee was released from jail in 1999. Also present was convicted ETA bomber Juan Ignacio de Juana Chaos, who is wanted in Spain. The rally was organized by the Irish Congress of Trade Unions (ICTU) and featured speeches by church, trade union and political representatives. The 53-year-old ETA terrorist's presence at the protest prompted a minister in the Northern Ireland Assembly to demand an apology from ICTU. Junior Democratic Unionist Party Minister Jeffrey Donaldson called on the trade union leadership to "apologize to the people of Spain" for the sight of the ETA killer. Donaldson said ICTU had to ask "serious questions about holding a rally that was going to attract people like him." He added: "I condemn his presence on this rally and hope the ICTU will apologize for it." De Juana Chaos is on bail fighting extradition back to Spain, where he is wanted to face charges in connection with allegedly encouraging further acts of terrorism. He lives in Belfast where he receives social security and is currently learning English at a local college. He served 21 years of a 3,000-year prison sentence for murdering 25 people and was arrested in Belfast last year after Spain issued an arrest warrant to the UK authorities. His lawyers have described Spain's extradition request as "fundamentally flawed."