The British, Irish and U.S. governments accused Noraid of being a front for the Provisional Irish Republican Army, an accusation that has always been denied by Noraid. Noraid's former leader, Martin Galvin, was banned from the United Kingdom in the 1980s.
NORAID are believed to have been involved in fund raising for Provisional IRA arms importation from North America since the early 1970s.
In May 1981, the U.S. Department of Justice won a court case forcing Noraid to register the Provisional Irish Republican Army as its "foreign principal", under the Foreign Agents Registration Act 1938. A compromise was reached which allowed Noraid to include a written disclaimer against the court ruling stating the document had been signed under force and that Noraid maintained that the IRA was not its "foreign principal". Federal attorneys agreed to this, and Noraid resumed filing its financial returns in July 1984.
The organization's former leader, Martin Galvin, is now a supporter of the 32 County Sovereignty Movement, an organization which rejects the Northern Ireland peace process and has been described as the political wing of the Real IRA. The 32 County Sovereignty Movement and the Real IRA are illegal organisations in the Republic of Ireland and are both designated as terrorist organisations in the United Kingdom and the United States.
The organisation's mission statement declares that:
Irish Northern Aid is an American based membership organization that supports through peaceful means, the establishment of a democratic 32-county Ireland.
Our Strategy: To develop a broad coalition of supporters for Irish Unity through organizing and educating the public, our members, political leaders, and the media.
To support the current Peace Process, including the full implementation of the Good Friday Agreement which was endorsed by the vast majority of the Irish people.
To support a process of National reconciliation and equality for all the citizens of Ireland.
Membership: In keeping with the principles of the 1916 Proclamation, Irish Northern Aid is open to anyone who shares these values.