BISHOP Edward Daly of Derry attacked the RUC earlier this week and accused it of contributing to the death of Dermott Hackett, the deliveryman shot dead by a Loyalist death squad in Omagh, Co Tyrone.
Bishop Daly spoke at the funeral of Mr Hackett and questioned the tactics of the RUC "in picking on obviously innocent people". The bishop suggested that when a man such as Mr Hackett was harassed by the police it left him "vulnerable to attack and to murder by some of the psychopaths who abound
in our society".
Such harassment, he continued, had created the errdneous impression that he was politically involved, and so here was wrongfully suspected by the Loyalist extremists of having IRA connections.
In response, the RUC stated that 16 people had died in terrorist activities in the area in 10 years. "Police are entitled, indeed duty-bound, to speak to any person they believe may be in a posi ion to help them", the statement continued.
• Bishop Desmond Williams, Chairman of the Catholic Social Service Conference in Ireland, has described the Church's response to the AIDS crisis as "challenging and positive". Although the Conference welcomed the general thrust of the Irish Government's campaign, Bishop Williams also drew attention to "the urgent need to address the specific problem of drug abusers, who are unlikely to be reached by a general programme of information".