Uachtarán Shinn Féin Mary Lou McDonald TD has said she will continue to stand with the Bloody Sunday and Hegarty families in their long campaign for truth and justice.
She said that the cover-ups must end and that the Irish government has a responsibility to stand up for victims of the conflict by ensuring that an international agreement with the British government on tackling the past is implemented.
The Sinn Féin President said:
“Today’s news that prosecutions will not be brought against former British soldiers accused of murder on the streets of Derry in 1972 is a devastating and heart-breaking blow to the families who have been campaigning for truth and justice for almost 50 years.
“My thoughts are with the families of those massacred on Bloody Sunday, together with the family of a 15-year-old boy Daniel Hegarty, who have campaigned for truth and justice with courage and dignity for five decades.
“It is a bad day for justice, a bad day for the families and a bad day for the people of Derry.
“On Bloody Sunday, British soldiers gunned down innocent civil rights marchers, peaceful protestors, many of them only teenagers. Some were executed as they lay wounded on the ground. The British government has now sent out a clear message that its state forces can carry out murder with impunity.
“That is wrong, unjustified and unjustifiable.
“The families will continue their campaign for truth.
“They have announced their intention to take a judicial review of this decision, but it is intolerable that they have been forced to go back to court again. We will continue to stand with them.
“The cover-ups must end. British state forces must be held accountable for their actions.
“Today’s announcement comes as the British government is attempting to put its state forces, agents and proxies beyond the law. This is the outworking of the proposal for amnesty for British state forces.
“That is unacceptable. The Taoiseach and the Irish government have a responsibility as co-guarantors of the Stormont House Agreement on tackling the past to stand up for all victims of the conflict and ensure that an agreement made is an agreement implemented.” Críoch/Ends —