Time for Truth brings campaign to Stormont

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Victims and survivors of the recent conflict in the north of Ireland travelled to Stormont this week as part of the ‘Time for Truth’ campaign and submitted 6000 responses to the British government’s consultation on ‘Addressing the Legacy of the Past in the North’.

It comes amid a major push by right-wing elements within the British establishment to secure an amnesty for killer soldiers who may yet face questioning for their actions during the conflict.

The ‘Time for Truth’ campaign is campaigning for the London and Dublin governments to implement and fund legacy mechanisms for dealing with the past, including coronial inquests and the office of the Police Ombudsman.

It is organising advice clinics across Belfast today [Saturday, September 29], to gather further responses before the close of the consultation on 5th of October.

“Although we want to ensure that the work is done properly, unlike it was in the past, families have longer to wait for any prospect of truth and justice under the proposed mechanisms, so the proper resourcing of the legacy inquests and the Office of the Police Ombudsman could help begin the process now,” said campaign spokesperson Ciaran MacAirt.

“Any other delay will see the families of the Time for Truth campaign take to the streets as we did in February of this year when 7000 victims and survivors, friends and supporters joined our March for Truth.”

The families involved include representatives from the Ballymurphy Massacre Committee, McGurk’s Bar Commemoration Committee, Loughinisland Justice Group, Springhill Massacre Group, Kelly’s Bar Campaign Group, the New Lodge Six Campaign, Ormeau Road Bookies Campaign and others.

Sinn Fein’s Emma Rogan praised the families who she said “have shown such dignity and resilience during their long battle for truth and justice,” she said.

The South Down representative, whose father was killed in the 1994 Loughinisland massacre, stressed the importance of victims and survivors making their voices heard.

“I was privileged to stand with them today as they made their submission at Stormont and I would again urge all those affected by the conflict to do the same before it closes on October 5th.

“It is crucial that all voices, particularly those of victims, are heard as part of this consultation process. Sinn Fein will be publishing our own submission in the coming days, setting out the case for the full implementation of the Stormont House Legacy mechanisms in a human rights compliant manner.

“We will also be demanding an end to the denial of inquest funding to the Lord Chief Justice and making it abundantly clear that any attempt to introduce an amnesty for British forces who killed Irish citizens is entirely unacceptable.

“No one is above the law and all victims and survivors should have the same access to processes of truth and justice.

“That is what this consultation and the subsequent legislation must deliver if it is to meet the needs of families and deliver on the promise of the Stormont House Agreement.”

* More information is available at tftcampaign.com

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