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Volume 932: debated on Monday 16 May 1977

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asked the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland how many persons in each year since 1969 have been imprisoned or kept in detention centres in Northern Ireland for Irish Republican Army or other terrorist activities.

The figures for persons ordered to be interned or detained under emergency legislation from 1971 until detention ceased in 1975 are as follows:

Prison records do not separately identify persons imprisoned for terrorist activities and it is not possible therefore to answer that part of the question in the form requested. All special category prisoners, however, have been convicted of offences connected with the civil disturbances. Special category status, which was introduced in June 1972, has not been granted to prisoners convicted of offences committed after 1st March 1976 when there was 1517 such prisoners. Comparable figures for the years 1973–1975 were 423, 755 and 1232 respectively. By 11th May 1977 the number of special category prisoners had fallen to 998. Some 330 post 1st March offenders have been sentenced to imprisonment for offences believed to have been connected with the disturbances.