UVF were asked by MI5 to execute Charles Haughey, state papers reveal
"We have no love for you but we are not going to carry out work for the Dirty Tricks Department of the British."
The Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF) were reportedly approached on behalf of the British Security Service MI5 and asked to execute then Taoiseach Charles Haughey, according to declassified state papers from 1987, released on Friday.
A letter, penned by Capt W Johnston (a name regularly used on UVF statements) and reportedly sent to Haughey in August 1987, warned of an approach that had been made in Lisburn by an MI5 officer in 1985, when the UVF were asked to execute the then Taoiseach.
The letter, referenced on the RTÉ website on Friday, read: "In 1985 we were approached by a MI5 officer attached to the NIO (Northern Ireland Office) and based in Lisburn, Alex Jones was his supposed name.
"He asked us to execute you."
The letter claims that the UVF were supplied with a number of Haughey’s personal details – information on his cars and private yacht, aerial photographs of his homes in Dublin and Kerry – and that the UVF were asked to accept responsibility for his killing if it was carried out.
In the letter, the UVF reportedly told Haughey that they refused to carry out the request, stating: "We have no love for you but we are not going to carry out work for the Dirty Tricks Department of the British."
The letter also includes allegations that the UVF killed 17 men between 1972 and 1985 based on information from British intelligence agencies, that “MI5 were double crossing us all the time we were working with them” and that they “executed some of our best men believing them to be traitors” as a result.
You can read more on the letter and on other findings from the State Papers on RTÉ here.