Irish Republican News · December 21, 2012
[Irish Republican News]

[Irish Republican News]
IRISH REPUBLICAN NEWS: Progress seen in Bloody Sunday justice campaign
Progress seen in Bloody Sunday justice campaign

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The Bloody Sunday families have welcomed news that former British soldiers may finally be questioned by the PSNI as part of a murder investigation into the killings.

Relatives of the 14 people who died after British paratroopers opened fire on nationalist demonstrators in the city in 1972 were told of the development this week.

Deputy Chief Constable Judith Gillespie confirmed that a detective had finally been appointed to head a murder investigation into the Bloody Sunday killings.

A weekend of commemorative and protest events is due to take place next month to mark the 41st anniversary of the massacre and to demand ‘an end to impunity’.

A number of Bloody Sunday families had launched a campaign for justice following the release of the report of the Saville Inquiry in June 2010. That report forced a public apology from British Prime Minister David Cameron and an admission that those massacred had been innocent.

Efforts to bring to justice those responsible for ordering the killings are now finally underway.

A wide range of witnesses are to be questioned, including the soldiers who carried out the shootings

A key focus of the investigation is likely to be the small number of soldiers directly involved in the gun attacks in Derry’s Glenfada Park area. One soldier in particular, known as soldier F, is believed to have killed Bernard McGuigan, Patrick Doherty, Michael Kelly and possibly Michael McKinney.

The families were told that the investigation could be expanded if necessary.

John Kelly, whose brother Michael was one of those killed, said the families were pleased with the outcome of the meeting.

Bloody Sunday relative Joe McKinney, brother of murdered William, says he now has more faith in the process.

“To be honest, I was starting to feel dejected after the events of 15 June 2010, to put it mildly. But police seem very positive and say they have to follow where their enquiries and the evidence lead. They say they have been relying heavily on the information contained within the Saville Report and they will now follow those key areas where Lord Saville pointed out there was murder committed. After today, I have more faith in the process.”

Sinn Féin assembly member Raymond McCartney welcomed the PSNI announcement that an investigation into the murders on Bloody Sunday has now begun.

He said the families had been given a timeline on how the PSNI expect that investigation to progress, which would help the families monitor how the investigation is progresing.

“Sinn Féin has supported the call by the families for a proper investigation to be carried out into the events of Bloody Sunday,” he said. ”The announcement today that a full time team of PSNI officers have begun an investigation has to be welcomed as a step forward.”

© 2012 Irish Republican News