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Trimble attacks 'horrendous allegations'

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Amazon.co.uk is being sued for selling a book deemed to be libellous by a senior Northern Ireland politician and joint winner of the Nobel Peace Prize. David Trimble, Northern Ireland's First Minister, maintains that The Committee: Political Assassination in Northern Ireland by Sean McPhilemy contains "horrendous allegations" about his alleged involvement in sectarian violence. "False accusations about one's own character are always unpleasant and distressing," Trimble told the BBC. "As much as the false allegations damage my reputation, they belittle the peace process and mock all those who have been a part of it," he said. A spokeswoman for Amazon.co.uk said she was aware of the legal action but was unable to comment. Although Amazon.co.uk is looking into the matter it has decided not to withdraw the book from sale while it awaits the outcome of its investigation. The Constitution and its First Amendment ruling on the freedom of speech prevents public figures from suing for libel in the US. Such liberal laws do not apply in the UK. ®

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