Loyalist hitman tells of plan to gun down Livingstone

FORMER Loyalist hitman Michael Stone has revealed he was commissioned by the Ulster Freedom Fighters to assassinate Ken Livingstone.

But he said the 1984 plot was abandoned because of fears it had been infiltrated by a Special Branch informer.

Mr Livingstone - then head of the Greater London Council - was targeted because of his outspoken support for Sinn Fein president Gerry Adams.

Stone said: "Livingstone was the enemy. He was hated with a passion by Loyalists. He was giving support to people we were at war with and that made him a legitimate target."

Stone said he bought a 9mm Beretta automatic pistol and carried out a "dry run" by pretending to be a jogger and following Mr Livingstone to Westminster Tube station.

But a few days later the mission was cancelled by the UFF.

Stone said: "I learned later I would probably have been ambushed by Special Branch."

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