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From: The Socialist issue 629, 16 June 2010: Millionaire ministers savage public services

Search site for keywords: Northern Ireland - Ireland - Sinn Fein - Civil rights - Fees - Bloody Sunday

Bloody Sunday report appears 38 years late

THE SAVILLE Report into the shooting dead of 14 unarmed protesters and bystanders by members of the British parachute regiment at a civil rights demo in Derry, Northern Ireland, on 30 January 1972, has finally been published.

The report - which contains 900 witnesses' interviews, cost 12 million (including 100 million in legal fees) and has taken 12 years to compile - concludes that 'some of the victims' were unlawfully killed by British soldiers.

This conclusion begs the question as to whether the authorities will attempt to prosecute a number of soldiers. For the establishment, at this late stage, prosecution would open up a political can of worms as loyalist and republican paramilitaries convicted of sectarian murders were released early from prison as part of an amnesty under the Good Friday agreement.

The original report into the shootings by Lord Widgery in 1972 was a whitewash. In 1998 the PM, Tony Blair, agreed to a fresh inquiry as an olive branch to get Sinn Fein nationalists to sign up to the Northern Ireland peace initiative.

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