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British Government cannot rule out Truth Commission – Sinn Féin MP tells Paterson

28 February, 2012 - by Westminster

Sinn Féin West Tyrone MP Pat Doherty will tell British Secretary of State, Owen Paterson that the British government cannot rule out an Independent International Truth Recovery Commission when he meets him at Westminster today.

Speaking from London Pat Doherty said:

“Recent comments by Owen Patterson opposing a truth commission style approach to dealing with the legacy of the past bordered on the contemptible towards those who suffered throughout the conflict!

“I will make that clear to Mr Patterson when I meet him at Portcullis House, Westminster this afternoon. Any attempt to rule out an Independent International Truth Commission style approach to truth recovery is arrogant and completely ignores the fact that the British Government was a party to the conflict.

“Sinn Féin has put forward proposals to address truth recovery and dealing with the past insisting that any process must be victim centred and international, independent and inclusive of all participants including the two governments.

“Republicans have made it clear that we would participate in such a body. The British Government should accept that it was central to the conflict and make it clear that it would participate in such a process instead of prevaricating and attempting to portray itself as some sort of neutral referee between two warring factions. This portrayal is both dishonest and disingenuous and makes no contribution to dealing with the past on a basis of openness and transparency.

“I will also take the opportunity to challenge Mr Paterson on his government’s austerity policies and in particular its so-called Welfare Reform measures. I will be registering Sinn Féin’s continued opposition to these policies that are having a devastating effect on our communities and economy.”

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