Human rights lawyers lend support to Time for Truth march

Posted By: February 23, 2018

Irish News. Belfast. Friday, February 23, 2018

We the undersigned are writing this letter in support of the ‘Time for Truth’ march organized by the Loughinisland, Ballymurphy, Springhill, New Lodge 6, McGurk’s, Kelly’s Bar and Ormeau Road campaign groups.

We recognize and acknowledge the growing frustration and concern of families over the refusal of the British government to address legacy issues and the deepening justice vacuum confronting victims and survivors seeking access to justice.

We believe that it is unacceptable and intolerable that the legacy mechanisms agreed in the Stormont House Agreement of December 2014 and the five-year plan to complete outstanding legacy inquests outlined by the Lord Chief Justice, Sir Declan Morgan, in February 2016 have yet to be implemented.

It is also a matter of great concern to us that elements within the British political establishment appear intent on implementing urgent legislation designed to shield former members of the British army against prosecution.

It is surely of no coincidence that this has been prioritized by the British government in circumstances where decisions on whether to prosecute British soldiers, for what former British prime minister David Cameron MP described as the “unjustified and unjustifiable” murders and attempted murders of innocent unarmed civilians on Bloody Sunday are expected imminently.

We also note the delays which many families have recently been notified of, in respect of pending reports by the Police Ombudsman, as a result of recent litigation by the Retired Police Officers Association. The maxim that justice delayed is justice denied could not be more appropriate in the circumstances.

We are committed to a human rights compliant approach to addressing outstanding legacy issues.

We fully endorse the recent demands of the march organizers for the British government to implement the legacy mechanisms agreed at Stormont House Agreement, the resourcing of legacy inquests as set out by the Lord Chief Justice and the proper resourcing of the Police Ombudsman’s office.

The loss suffered by many families in our recent conflict has been compounded by the failure of the justice system in the past to acknowledge the wrong done to them.

If we are to restore confidence in the justice system and rule of law it is imperative that the reasonable expectations of the victims are implemented without any further delay.

We appeal to all citizens to join victims and survivors on the ‘Time for Truth’ march this Sunday to Belfast City Hall.

We will walk with them.


Pádraig Ó Muirigh, Niall Murphy, Fearghal Shiels, Mark Austin, Philip Breen, Caitlín Bunting, Stephen Cassidy,

Patricia Coyle, Micky Crawford, Catherine Dowling, Paul Duffy, Mark Durkan, Patrick Fahy, Michael Fahy, John Finucane, Adam George, Michael Halleron, Marie Hans

John Keown, Rosie Kinnear, Keith Kyle, Sinead Larkin, Tracey Lenzi, Michael Madden, Patrick Madden, Peter Madden, Don Mahoney, Paddy MacDermott, Chris McCann, Paul McCann

Kevin McDonnell, Francine McFarland, Conall McGarrity, Claire McGoldrick, Ciaran McGuiness, Paddy McGurk, Claire McKeegan, Joe McVeigh, Meabh Molloy, Eoin Murphy

Anna Nugent, Marguerite O’Halleron, Adam O’Kane, Paul Pierce, Jack Quigley, Seamus Quigley, Nicholas Quinn, Ciaran Shiels, Ciaran Toner,

Kevin Winters.