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Truth consultation should lead to 'historical clarification'

27 May, 2004

Sinn Fein North Antrim MLA Philip McGuigan has said that any consultation on this issue needs to be independent of any of the protagonists if it is to have any credibility. It should also include acknowledgement by all protagonists of their role in the conflict and should lead to historical clarification.

Mr McGuigan said:

"The British government cannot take the lead role in any truth and reconciliation process. The British government is a protagonist in the conflict. Only an independent process with a clear international dimension will have any credibility.

"If the British government wants to genuinely contribute to the search for healing and closure it should end the culture of concealment and initiate an inquiry into the murder of Pat Finucane. It should also acknowledge its role in creating and maintaining the conflict. It is clear from every other example around the world that the process of healing can only begin when the state acknowledges its actions.

"From what the British government is saying there appears to be a particular focus on storytelling, and while this may serve some purpose, the reality is that any truth process needs to examine at the causes, nature and extent of the conflict and lead to historical clarification." ENDS

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