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True reconciliation needs truth and justice - Anderson

15 December, 2015 - by Martina Anderson MEP

Martina Anderson MEP for the six-counties has challenged the British government's refusal to disclose essential information in the European Parliament and called on them to disclose relevant information surrounding their actions during the conflict in Ireland.

Speaking during a debate on the protection of the victims of terrorism, Ms Anderson said;

"In the wake of devastating terrorist atrocities inflicted on the world in recent months and years I would like to convey my upmost sympathy to all the victims and their families.

"The growth of Da'esh in the Middle East and North Africa is an enormous cause for concern for all. We must take steps to neutralize their trade with third nations and restrict their access to funds. We must protect and offer true humanity to their victims - that includes a genuine resolution to the refugee crisis at Europe's borders.

"It is essential that the victims of Da'esh barbarism are supported in whatever way possible. Member States must encourage peaceful resolutions to existing conflicts and resist the urge to contribute to the escalation of others."

Speaking from Strasbourg, Martina Anderson continued;

"We must also be realistic about the role of the state. State terrorism and state sponsored terrorism is often neglected in these debates, but their victims suffer equally.

"The recent conflict in Ireland saw the British state apparatus kill with impunity. The British state was not a referee or a neutral actor in the conflict: it was an active protagonist.

"Intimidation, the running of agents, the targeting of innocent civilians, collusion with and protection for loyalist killers, shoot-to-kill policies and extra judicial killings are all now accepted past actions of the British state in Ireland.

"Speaking in Belfast, the European Human Rights Commissioner, Nils Muznieks stated;

Until now there has been virtual impunity for State actors. The issue of impunity is a very serious one and the UK government has a responsibility to uphold the rule of law. This is not just an issue of dealing with the past, it has to do with upholding the law in general.

"The current British government has been utterly hopeless in dealing with the legacy of the conflict and are failing to protect victims.

"Their insistence on possessing a veto on the release of information on the grounds of 'national security' is an insult to victims' families. True reconciliation needs truth and justice."

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