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Victim Groups Rejects “New” British Government Proposals

The British Government, yesterday unveiled “new” proposals to deal with investigations into the past conflict.

Previously they had proposed ending all investigations and imposing a blanket amnesty for their military and all others. These proposals were rejected by all political parties, victim groups, human rights groups, and the Irish government.

Yesterday they unveiled a “new” approach that would grant an amnesty in return for information and avoid any investigation. They have not released any draft legislation or details on how the scheme would operate.

The proposals have been rejected by victim groups.

Relatives for Justice said,

“This proposed Bill is specifically designed to remove the rights of all victims to effective independent investigation, remedy, accountability and ultimately justice.

This proposed Bill places the British government in control of a deeply flawed process by which they alone determine who to punish, attribute blame, and continue its programme of anonymity and impunity, all this whilst lecturing victims that this is in their best interests.

"This is typically self-serving and primarily in the interests of privileging State perpetrators and their agents. Overall however this proposed Bill privileges all perpetrators to the detriment of victims and their rights.

Victims of all persuasions and from all backgrounds will once again look to the Irish government, Irish-America, the Council of Europe and the UN to uphold their legal rights secured by the GFA and stand up to the UK government by rejecting this outrageous proposed Bill.”

The Pat Finucane Centre rejected the proposals saying the latest proposals,

"Are is not designed to serve the needs of victims or survivors. It is aimed solely at protecting state actors from prosecution who were involved in conflict-related deaths

This new system would potentially allow a state actor (soldier/policeman/intelligence agent) responsible for causing a death, merely to reiterate whatever statement they made at the time - usually an attempt to justify their actions. There would be no scrutiny of those claims.

Without a robust investigation, other evidence would not be produced. Statements would remain unchallenged and untested. Families of the dead and injured left without answers.”

All groups are committed to continuing to secure truth and justice and end the cover-ups


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