Jeremy Corbyn failed to condemn the IRA directly when pressed on the Troubles in an interview, but insisted that ‘all bombing is bad’.
The Labour leader was repeatedly ask to single out the terrorist group for blame, but he said he ‘condemned all those that do bombing, all those on both sides’.
It’s not the first time Corbyn’s links to the Republican cause have come under scrutiny.
Yesterday it was revealed that MI5 opened a file on Corbyn during the 1990s, to assess whether he was a threat to national security.
He and John McDonnell, now shadow chancellor, were open supporters of Sinn Féin and met the party on a number of occasions during the 1990s.
But Mr Corbyn insisted that the meetings in Westminster were organised as an attempt to bring peace to Northern Ireland.
In a heated interview with Sky News journalist Sophy Ridge, Mr Corbyn said: ‘There were Loyalist bombs as well. I condemn all the bombing by both the Loyalists and the IRA.’
He added: ‘I recognised that you had to bring about a peace process in Ireland. I did my best to assist in that process and that is the way you bring about peace anywhere in the world.’
When asked whether he had backed ‘one clear side’ of the conflict, in which 3,600 people died, he said: ‘I worked with colleagues in parliament in the SDLP and the Labour party, I visited Northern Ireland on a number of occasions, I met people from right across the spectrum.’
Arlene Foster, leader of the Democratic Unionist Party will attack Corbyn in a speech tomorrow, in which she will describe him as ‘beyond the political pale’.
Ms Foster, Northern Ireland’s former first minister, is expected to attack the Labour leader in a speech in London on Monday.
The former first minister of Northern Ireland is expected to say: ‘Political leaders from Northern Ireland understandably often remain neutral, at least publicly, about the outcome of a Westminster general election.
‘But this election is different. While Theresa May is well within the political mainstream and has proven herself to be a solid and reliable unionist, Jeremy Corbyn is beyond the political pale.
‘It is hard to take seriously the democratic credentials of a man who was so close to the political representatives of the IRA at the height of the Troubles.’