Sinn Féin President Gerry Adams TD has welcomed the decision by An Taoiseach Enda Kenny to visit the Ballymurphy area with the families of those killed in 1971.
Mr. Adams also welcomed the Taoiseach’s commitment to introduce into the Dáil an all-party Oireachtas motion of support for the Ballymurphy families.
Speaking in the Dáil today – Tuesday – Gerry Adams raised the decision by the British Secretary of State to refuse the request by the families for a review of the events that led to the killing of 11 residents by the British Parachute Regiment. The Sinn Féin leader also criticised Theresa Villiers' attempt to create a hierarchy of victims.
Mr Adams said:
“Three weeks ago the British Secretary of State Theresa Villiers criticised what she described as the one-sided focus on state killings.
A week later she announced her decision not to allow for the review of events, which the families have requested. She also refused a similar request from the families of the La Mon attack.
This weekend will mark the 40th anniversary of the Dublin Monaghan bombs which killed 34 citizens. A Dáil report into these bomb attacks described them as ‘acts of international terrorism that were colluded in by the British security forces’. The British government has consistently refused to hand over information requested of it by successive Irish governments.
Theresa Villiers'remarks, and her decisions, are a clear attempt by the British government to create a hierarchy of victims in which those killed directly by the British state and indirectly by it through state collusion with unionist death squads, are treated as second class.
This is unacceptable."
In his remarks An Taoiseach Enda Kenny reiterated his support for the Ballymurphy Massacre campaign; said that he was only informed the evening before of the British Secretary of State’s decision and that he will visit the Ballymurphy area on his next visit to Belfast. The Taoiseach also said that the government would be bringing a motion of support to the Dáil which would be discussed and agreed beforehand with all of the parties. END/CRÍOCH