Fr. Mc Manus’ statement used in Mc Cord’s legal brief against the British Government’s Brexit plans.

Posted By: September 14, 2016

CAPITOL HILL. Tuesday, September 13, 2016— Belfast Protestant  justice  campaigner Raymond Mc Cord, Sr. is to use a Washington statement of support in his legal case against the British Government’s plans on Brexit.

 Mr. Mc Cord said :“ Once again, I am very grateful for the support Fr. Mc Manus keeps giving me. He helped me bring my son’s case before Congress; he has been briefing Congress about the dangers of Brexit; and now he is supporting my legal case against the British Government, thus ensuring that many Irish-Americans will follow suit. My legal team and I contend Brexit will undermine the UK’s domestic and international treaty obligations under the Good Friday Agreement.  English politicians show no regard for justice for Northern Ireland and its victims, or for the majority of voters of Northern Ireland who voted to remain in the EU.”

Fr. Mc Manus’s statement in full follows below.

Statement by Fr. Sean Mc Manus,
President, Irish National Caucus, Washington, DC
  Monday, September 5, 2016

“Irish-Americans and the U.S. Congress have been in complete solidarity with Raymond Mc Cord’s long and brave struggle for justice for his murdered son, Raymond Jr., and for all victims in Northern Ireland.

Equally, there is now strong support for his action in challenging the British Government
over the Brexit vote because he believes it will make it even more difficult for victims to achieve justice.

 Indeed, the Irish News of Belfast has expressed similar concern, stating in its Editorial it “is widely feared … that  the 1998 Good Friday Agreement is also to be effectively rewritten along the way.” (“Debate needed before new vote.” September 5, 2016).

 And noted public commentator Fintan O’Toole has charged: “Recklessly, casually, with barely a thought, English nationalists have planted a bomb under the settlement that brought peace to Northern Ireland…… Though not strictly required by Brexit, the Leave-leadership is committed to removing the Convention [on Human Rights] from UK law – in other words, to ripping out a core part of the [ Good Friday] peace settlement.  (“The English have placed a bomb under the Irish peace process.” The Guardian. Friday, June 24, 2016).

Legal expert Brian Doherty, former legal adviser to the Stormont Government, has
 said, “Brexit would lead to a “substantial removal” of provisions for asserting human rights, which are an important part of the overall agreement that brought peace in Northern Ireland.”( “Brexit puts key parts of NI settlement at risk, says legal expert.” Colm Keena. Irish Times. Wednesday, June 29, 2016).

Also, there appears to be general fear that EU funding for human rights groups and groups campaigning for victims’ rights in Northern Ireland will not be replaced by British Government funding.
Therefore, the Irish National Caucus shares Raymond Mc Cord’s fears that on many levels Brexit—and the unilateral way the former British PM David Cameron and others engineered it—is bad for victims and for all in Northern Ireland— and for all on the island of Ireland.”