Commemorative Events To Mark The 41st Anniversary Of The
Dáil request for British Government to release files
Brendan Smith TD, raised a PQ in the Dáil on 21 April 2015 regarding the need for the British Government to release undisclosed files pertaining to the Dublin and Monaghan bombings. Mr. Charlie Flanagan, Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade replied as follows:
The Government fully supports the all-party Dáil motions of July 2008 and May 2011 urging the British Government to allow access by an independent international judicial figure to all original documents in their possession relating to the Dublin-Monaghan bombings. I have raised this issue with the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, Theresa Villiers MP, including when I met her in Belfast on 15 January and in Dublin on 11 February. I am aware and I welcome that you, Deputy Smith, and your party leader, Micheál Martin, raised this matter with Secretary of State Villiers when you met with her in February also. The Secretary of State has indicated on a number of occasions that the British Government would consider afresh how it can respond to the Dáil motions.
I welcome the continued all-party support for the campaign on behalf of the Dublin-Monaghan families. The Justice for the Forgotten campaign, which supports victims and their families and operates as a project of the Pat Finucane Centre, received grant support of €48,000 in 2014 from the Reconciliation Fund operated by my Department. The funding will assist Justice for the Forgotten with its important work.
I am aware that my officials will be meeting with representatives of Justice for the Forgotten in Belfast tomorrow in relation to the provisions for dealing with the past in the Stormont House Agreement. I would hope to have the opportunity myself to meet with Justice for the Forgotten within the coming weeks, and am conscious in that regard that the anniversary of the Dublin Monaghan bombings falls on 17 May. Anniversaries can be a particularly difficult time for the families of victims and for survivors and the Dublin Monaghan families are in my thoughts as we discuss this most sensitive of issues in this House today.
It is significant for victims and survivors of the Northern Ireland conflict - including in this jurisdiction - that the Stormont House Agreement provides for a new comprehensive framework for dealing with the legacy of the past. As part of the transition to long-term peace and stability, the participants in the Stormont House talks agreed an approach to dealing with the past which respects a number of important principles: promoting reconciliation; upholding the rule of law; acknowledging and addressing the suffering of victims and survivors; facilitating the pursuit of justice and information recovery; human rights compliance; and the need to be balanced, proportionate, transparent, fair and equitable. Both governments also made commitments in the Agreement on the matter of disclosure of information.
On his recent visit to the North, the Taoiseach made clear the importance which this Government attaches to the issue of disclosure and cooperation in dealing with the legacy of the past. For the Irish Government and other State authorities, this means committing to cooperating to the fullest possible extent with ongoing legacy cases. We have undertaken also to cooperate fully with the mechanisms being set up under the Stormont House Agreement and where legislation may be required to give effect to that commitment, it will be brought before this House.
It is in this context that I will continue to call on the British Government to provide access to an independent international judicial figure to original documents in its possession relating to the Dublin-Monaghan bombings. I would propose to take this matter up at an early date once a Secretary of State for Northern Ireland has been appointed following the upcoming Westminster elections.
JFF attend conference in Brescia, Italy
Pictured above at the memorial monument in Brescia are (left to right) Tomassino Magliocco, son of Antonio Magliocco, killed in Parnell Street, Dublin; Margaret Urwin; Giulio Giorello, philosopher and mathematician, University of Milan; Manlio Milani, President of Casa della Memoria, whose wife was killed in the Piazza della Loggia.
JFF was invited to participate in a conference on 29 November, which was jointly organised by Associazione Casa della Memoria (the organisation representing the families of the victims of the bombing on 28 May 1974 in the Piazza della Loggia, Brescia) and ANPI (The National association of the Italian Partisans founded by the participants to the Italian resistance against the fascist and Nazi occupation during World War 11).
The speakers were Sylvia Calamati, journalist and author; Manlio Milani (whose wife was killed in the Piazza della Loggia bombing); Giulio Giorello, philosopher and mathematician at the University of Milan, Carlo Gianuzzi, freelance translator and member of ANPI and JFF's Margaret Urwin. The conference was held to mark jointly the 40th anniversary of the Dublin and Monaghan bombings and the Piazza della Loggia bombing. The bombing in Brescia occurred during an anti-fascist rally and was carried out by a right-wing group with connections to the Italian Government.
Tomassino Magliocco, son of Antonio, who was killed in the Parnell Street bomb was a special guest at the conference and Sylvia Calamati, in her contribution, spoke of the suffering of the Magliocco family. JFF is very thankful to Associazione Case della Memoria and ANPI for inviting the Dublin and Monaghan bombings families to be represented and to join with them in their commemoration of the bombing of the Piazza della Loggia.
Margarets speech at the conference is available on youtube here.
Monaghan Bombing Links Project
Pictured above are Sean Conlon, Margaret Urwin and Brian Clerkin at the launch of the booklet.
The project was the brainchild of a young Monaghan man with a burning desire for truth and justice, Brian Clerkin. Its theme was "Building a Lasting Peace". The project's commemorative booklet was launched at a packed Markethouse in Monaghan on Wednesday, 22 October 2014.
The text of the speech Margaret Urwin made at the booklet launch can be found here.
A Poem For Peace
Pictured above reading the poem is Joseph Kelly, at the commemoration in Monaghan in May 2014.
This poem was composed by the young participants in the Monaghan Bombing Links Project and was read at the 40th anniversary commemoration in Monaghan by Joseph Kelly. The poem reflects their newfound knowledge and their yearning for truth and justice for the victims' families and survivors of the Dublin and Monaghan Bombings.
The text of the poem can be found here.
University College Cork talk
Anne Cadwallader and Margaret Urwin were invited to give a presentation at the Centre for Criminal Justice and Human Rights, in conjunction with the School of Applied Social Studies at UCC on 16 October 2014.
Anne gave a detailed visual presentation and talk on the stark findings of Lethal Allies while Margaret's address centred on the period immediately before and after the Dublin and Monaghan bombings, the climate of the period and the political context in which the bombings occurred. She made reference to numerous declassified documents from the UK National Archives, which demonstrate the British Government's determination from early 1974 to gain fuller co-operation from the Irish Government in cross-border security and the establishment of formal structures.
Day of Reflection - Dublin and Monaghan Bombings memorial garden, Glasnevin Cemetery
On 21 June, the longest day of the year, designated as a Day of Reflection for all victims of the Troubles, the families and survivors of the Dublin and Monaghan bombings held a private tree-planting ceremony in the Memorial Garden in Glasnevin Cemetery dedicated to the victims.
The ceremony, which took place on a beautiful summer day, included poetry, music and the singing of There is a Place by Pat Phelan. Prayers during the planting of the tree were said by Fr. Peter McVerry. The tree was planted by members of the O'Brien family who lost a brother, sister-in-law and two baby nieces in the Parnell Street bomb.
The Memorial Garden was designed and landscaped by Glasnevin Cemetery and the memorial stone, originally located outside the Garden of Remembrance, Parnell Square, was transferred to Glasnevin and upgraded by Dublin City Council.
The garden, with its seating and overhanging trees is an ideal place for calm reflection and we sincerely thank Glasnevin Cemetery and Dublin City Council for providing this wonderful memorial to the victims.
40th Anniversary Of Dublin And Monaghan Bombings
The 40th Anniversary Of the Dublin and Monaghan Bombings events included the annual wreath-laying ceremony in Dublin on the 17th of May 2014, which was followed by an Anniversary Mass in St. Mary's Pro-Cathedral, Dublin.
On Sunday, 18th May 2014, a wreath-laying ceremony was held in Monaghan Town and on Thursday, 22nd May 2014, President Michael D. Higgins and Mrs. Sabina Higgins hosted a reception for the bereaved families and survivors of the Dublin and Monaghan bombings in Áras an Uachtaráin.
For a more detailed account of these events please continue....
Meeting Of Justice For The Forgotten With The Tánaiste On 6th May 2014
Members of Justice for the Forgotten met with the Tánaiste in advance of the 40th anniversary of the Dublin and Monaghan bombings.
During the meeting the Tánaiste informed the delegation that the Government had agreed to provide them with a funding grant from the Department of Foreign Affairs Reconciliation Fund in the amount of €48,000 for the coming year. This announcement was greatly welcomed by the organisation and those present expressed their appreciation for this support for their ongoing work.
The Tánaiste also assured them of the continuing efforts being made by the Taoiseach and himself in urging the British Government to make the undisclosed files available for assessment.
Justice for the Forgotten told him that, unfortunately, their discussions with the British Ambassador had not produced a positive outcome and, in fact, no decision had been forthcoming from the British.
The organisation welcomes the Tánaiste’s forthright statement call on the British Government ‘to allow access on an agreed basis by an independent, international judicial figure to the original documents in their possession relating to the bombings.’ He urged the British ‘to look afresh at this request, which has been the subject of two all-party motions in Dáil Éireann’.
Dublin And Monaghan Families Take Civil Case Against The British Government
Justice for the Forgotten / Pat Finucane Centre hosted a packed press conference on the 14th of May 2014 to publicly announce an important new development in our campaign for truth and justice.
When the late Justice Henry Barron published the report of his Independent Commission of Inquiry into the Dublin and Monaghan bombings in December 2003, he deplored the failure of the British authorities to make original documents available to his Inquiry and their refusal to supply other information on national security grounds, saying they limited the scope of his report.
In the years since then, strenuous efforts have been made to persuade the British to release the papers. Two motions were passed unanimously by Dáil Éireann in 2008 and 2011, respectively, urging them to make the undisclosed documents available to an independent, international judicial figure for assessment. Westminster ignored these motions.
More recently, in meetings with the current British Ambassador, JFF proposed that the documents be assessed in Britain, and even in situ if necessary, so that no issue of national security need arise.
A highly-respected individual, who it was believed would be acceptable to both sides, was suggested as the assessor. However, an arranged meeting to progress the discussion was cancelled by the British side last November and no new meeting has been offered since then.
Because of this refusal to continue the conversation, the families feel, after 40 long years, that they can wait no longer. They have been very patient. They have decided, very reluctantly, to take the difficult path of civil litigation against the British Ministry of Defence, the Police Service of Northern Ireland, the Northern Ireland Office and the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland.
Commemorative Events To Mark The 40th Anniversary Of The
Presentations at Irish Centre for Human Rights, NUI Galway
4 March 2014
Anne Cadwallader and Margaret Urwin were invited to give presentations to students at the Irish Centre for Human Rights.
Anne spoke of the stark findings of Lethal Allies while Margaret gave a short talk on the period surrounding the Dublin and Monaghan bombings, the climate of the period and the context in which the bombings occurred. She made reference to declassified documents from the UK National Archives, Kew, which demonstate the British Government's anxiety from early 1974 to gain increasing co-operation from the Irish Government in cross-border security and to put formal structures in place.
Talk given to students of Institute for the International Education of Students (IES Abroad)
19 February 2014
Aidan Shields, whose mother was killed in the Dublin and Monaghan bombings (Talbot Street, Dublin) and Margaret Urwin spoke to US students at the invitiation of Brendan O'Brien, former RTE journalist and a lecturer at the college.
Aidan spoke movingly about his own personal story and the terrible impact the loss of his mother had on his father, his two sisters and himself. It was the first time he had ever told his story in public and this was greatly appreciated by the students.
Margaret spoke of the bombings and the people who were killed on that dreadful day. She also addressed the need to deal with the legacy of the past in Ireland and recalled the Spanish experience and its inability to sweep the past under the carpet in a Pact of Forgetting (Pacto del Olvido).
Public meeting on collusion in the Creighton Hotel, Clones, Co. Monaghan
12 February 2014
The successful meeting, organised by Failte Cluain Eois, was very well attended.
The speakers included Anne Cadwallader, Pat Finucane Centre and author of Lethal Allies; Brian MacDomhnaill, author of The 'Pitchfork' Murders; Mark Thompson of Relatives for Justice and Margaret Urwin of Justice for the Forgotten.
Margaret spoke about the continuing work of the organisation and about inequalities in the treatment of victims based outside of Northern Ireland in terms of dealing with the past and the issue of funding.
Cross-border delegation visits European Parliament
28 January 2014
Justice for the Forgotten joined victims' groups from the North in a visit to the European Parliament at the invitation of Ms Martina Anderson, MEP. The Pat Finucane Centre and Relatives for Justice attended, with family members of those bereaved in the Ballymurphy Massacre; Kelly's Bar, Whiterock, Belfast; a victim of the Military Reaction Force; the New Lodge Six; Sean Graham Bookmakers; Loughinisland; the Hooded Men; Dublin and Monaghan, Dundalk, Castleblayney, Belturbet, Dublin 1972 and 1973 bombings. Presentations were made to MEPs on British State killings and collusion in these attacks.
Presentation to the Joint Oireachtas Committee on the Implementation of the Good Friday Agreement
Justice for the Forgotten and the Pat Finucane Centre made a joint presentation to the GFA Committee on 16 January 2014. Margaret Urwin of Justice for the Forgotten pleaded the case for equality for victims located outside of Northern Ireland while Anne Cadwallader of the Pat Finucane Centre informed the committee of the details in her recently published bestseller, Lethal Allies.
GFA committee press release
Motion of support from Monaghan Town Council
At the December monthly meeting of Monaghan Town Council the Members adopted the following Notice of Motion:
'As we enter the year of the 40th anniversary of the Dublin/Monaghan bombings, that this local authority reiterates our support for the Justice for the Forgotten committeee and their aims of campaigning for truth and justice for the victims of the Dublin and Monaghan bombings of 17 May 1974'.
Meeting with Northern Ireland Victims' Commissioner
19 November 2013
Justice for the Forgotten was invited to meet with the Victims' Commissioner, Kathryn Stone, along with representatives of the Tim Parry/Jonathan Ball Foundation, to discusss our funding difficulties. The meeting was also attended by officials from the Office of the First and deputy First Ministers and the Victims' and Suvivors' Service.
Ms Stone expressed concern at the exclusion of victims' organisations located outside of Northern Ireland from funding opportunities and promised to attempt to remedy the situation.
Dublin Launch of Lethal Allies in Glasnevin Museum
29 September 2013
Anne Cadwallader's groundbreaking book, Lethal Allies, has had a very successful Dublin launch with several hundred people in attendance, which follows in the wake of a outstanding recent launch in Belfast.
Its launch is a momentous landmark, not only for the Pat Finucane Centre, but for Justice for the Forgotten and especially the families and survivors which JFF represents. It comes after almost four decades of struggle for the truth.
The main speaker was Vincent Browne who spoke movingly of his memories of being an eyewitness to the Talbot Street bombing on 17 May 1974. Frank Connolly also remembered his experience, while a Trinity College student, of the South Leinster Street bomb. Margaret Urwin voiced the opinion that whistleblowers John Weir, Colin Wallace and Fred Holroyd had been vindicated by the facts exposed in the book. Colin Wallace had sent a message to JFF stating the following:
'For many years the authorities claimed that the allegations Fred Holroyd and I made about links between the mid-Ulster UVF and the security forces were totally untrue. Indeed, the Army Minister, Archie Hamiliton, told Parliament that there was no evidence to substantiate our claims. It is now clear that at the time these denials were being made, thRUC and the Army knew that what we were saying was correct'.
In an emotional address, the author spoke of the long years of suffering endured by the families and thanked them for telling their stories and trusting the Pat Finucane Centre with helping them to fight their corner.
A huge debt of gratitude is owed to Anne Cadwallader for exposing a small part of Britain's Dirty War in Ireland.
Police Ombudsman for Northern Ireland accepts JFF's complaint
Police Ombudsman for Northern Ireland accepts JFF's complaint regarding the Dublin and Monaghan bombings
Justice for the Forgotten has been informed by Mr. Paul Holmes, Director of Historical Investigations within the Office of the Police Ombudsman for Northern Ireland (PONI) that its complaint regarding the RUC investigation into the Dublin and Monaghan bombings falls within their remit. The PONI investigation is due to commence during 2014. This is a great breakthrough for the campaign after several years in the wilderness.
COUNTER-GANGS booklet published
COUNTER-GANGS: A history of undercover military units in Northern Ireland 1971-1976 shows how the application of colonial counter-insurgency theory led to the recruitment of paramilitaries by plain-clothes army units in the early 1970s.
The author of COUNTER-GANGS, Margaret Urwin is secretary of Justice for the Forgotten, an arm of the Pat Finucane Centre which works with victims of cross-border bombings in the 1970s.
Her report is based on years of work including interviews with former members of the security forces and extensive documentary research.
Among its key findings:
- Senior Army officers at Headquarters Northern Ireland instructed subordinate commands in late 1971 to develop informal contacts with loyalist paramilitaries, described as 'unofficial unarmed bodies... ...working in the public interest.'
COUNTER-GANGS is the most comprehensive study available about the Military Reaction Force and its successor the Special Reconnaissance Unit.
The report is the first of the State Violence and Collusion Project, an online research collaboration between SpinWatch and the Pat Finucane Centre, established with funding from the Scurrah Wainwright Charity.
Meeting of Justice for the Forgotten with the Taoiseach
19th July 2013
Justice for the Forgotten / Pat Finucane Centre met with the Taoiseach in Government Buildings yesterday evening, 18 July 2013.
More than 20 family members of those killed in Dublin in December 1972 and January 1973; in Dublin and Monaghan in May 1974; in Belturbet in December 1972; in Dundalk in December 1975 and in Castleblayney in March 1976, as well as survivors, attended the meeting.
The Taoiseach heard a family representative from each bomb attack describe the impact the atrocity had on their lives.
We apprised the Taoiseach of our recent positive meeting with the British Ambassador and appealed to him to back us in our endeavours with the British Government and he has agreed to do so.
The Taoiseach reaffirmed his support and that of his Government for the all-party Dáil motions, which were passed unanimously (July 2008 and May 2011) urging the British authorities to make available all original documents in their possession relating to the cross-border bombings of the 1970s.
We look forward to engaging positively with both Governments in the months ahead.
39th Anniversary of the Dublin and Monaghan bombings
05th June 2013
The annual wreath-laying ceremony took place at the Talbot Street memorial on 17th May where the prayers were led by Fr. Tom Clowe.
The Lord Mayor of Dublin, Naoise Ó Muirí, laid a wreath on behalf of the citizens of Dublin. He welcomed everybody to the ceremony and expressed the hope that the British authorities would release the undisclosed files being sought by Justice for the Forgotten.
This years oration was delivered by renowned artist, Robert Ballagh. Further details available in the longer events summary here.
The names of the victims were read by survivor, Marie Sherry, and a minutes silence was observed. Greg ONeill laid the wreath on behalf of Justice for the Forgotten and the families laid their own floral tributes.
Kevin OLoughlin, whose mother Christina was killed in South Leinster Street, thanked everybody for showing their support and solidarity with the families and survivors by attending the event.
The ceremony was followed by the annual commemorative Mass in St. Francis Xaviers Church, Upper Gardiner Street.
39th Anniversary of the Dublin and Monaghan bombings
Public event 17th May 2013
13th May 2013
A wreath-laying ceremony will take place at the Talbot Street memorial (near Connolly train station) on Friday next, 17th May 2013 at 11.30 am. Prayers will be led by Rev. Tom Clowe SDB and the annual oration will be delivered by the artist, Robert Ballagh.
The anniversary Mass will be celebrated by Rev. Tom
40th Anniversary of the Dublin bombings 1972-73
10th December 2012
The 40th anniversary of the Dublin bombings of December 1972 and January 1973 was commemorated at a moving wreath-laying ceremony in Sackville Place, the location where the three victims were killed.
Bus driver George Bradshaw (30) and bus conductor Tommy Duffy (29) were killed in the first car bomb explosions in the Republic of Ireland on 1st December 1972, while bus conductor Tommy Douglas (21) lost his life on the same street on 20th January 1973 as a result of another loyalist car bomb.
Wreaths were laid by Naoise Ó Muirí, Lord Mayor of Dublin; Paddy Doherty, CEO of Dublin Bus and Maureen Douglas-Noble on behalf of Justice for the Forgotten. Wreaths and floral tributes were also laid by family members and friends of the deceased.
Jack OConnor, General President of SIPTU, gave the oration in which he said:
Peace has come dropping slow and has transformed relations on this island and between the islands of Ireland and Britain but justice still demands closure for those who have lost their loved ones.
Despite the selfless and tireless work of Justice for the Forgotten the identities of those responsible for the Liberty Hall and Sackville Place bombings remain unknown. Dáil motions in 2008 and 2011 called on the British authorities to release undisclosed documents which Justice for the Forgotten believes can help to throw light on these and other attacks.
Prayers were led by Fr. Tom Clowe SDB and Fr. Fintan OShea OFM, Chaplain to Dublin Bus.
The CIE Male Voice Choir performed three pieces: How great Thou art; Ag Críost an Síol and Silent Night.
Grace Bradshaw, grand-daughter of Tommy Duffy played two airs on the flute: Easter Snow and Ar Éirinn ní n-eosfainn cé h-í.
Justice for the Forgotten wishes to express its sincere appreciation for the contribution of Dublin Bus in ensuring the success of the event.
We also want to thank the members of the public who came to show solidarity with the families on the day.
40th Anniversary of the Sackville Place bombings
26th November 2012
Justice for the Forgotten, in conjuction with Dublin Bus, will be marking this occasion with the holding of a significant commemorative event on Tuesday, 4th December 2012 at 11.30 am.
A wreath-laying ceremony to honour and remember the
three busmen who were killed will take place in Sackville Place (off
O'Connell Street, Dublin 1) at the site of the pavement memorial:
A Fallen Bouquet.
The oration will be given by Mr. Jack OConnor, General President of SIPTU.
The CIE Male Voice Choir and Ms Grace Bradshaw, grand-daughter of the late Tommy Duffy (killed on 1st December 1972) will provide the music.
George Bradshaw (29) - killed on 1st December 1972
Tommy Duffy (23) - killed on 1st December 1972
Tommy Douglas (21) - killed on 20th January 1973
Everyone is welcome to attend and show solidarity with the families of the victims at this public event.
34th victim of the Dublin and Monaghan bombings
23rd September 2012
We are very pleased that the name of Baby Doherty, the full-term unborn child of Talbot Street bomb victim, Collette Doherty, has been added to the list of names on the memorial to the victims of the Dublin and Monaghan bombings in Talbot Street.
Our sincere thanks to Seán Crowe TD and to Ruari Ó Cuív, Dublin City Council, for making this possible.
Meeting with British Ambassador
17th September 2012
Representatives from Justice for the Forgotten, with
Senator Jim Walsh, met with the British Ambassador, H.E. Dominick
Chilcott. We pressed him on the necessity of making the undisclosed
documents withheld from the Barron Inquiry available to an independent,
international judicial figure for assessment.
The Ambassador promised to convey our proposals to his relevant ministers and to inform us of the outcome.
38th anniversary of the Dublin and Monaghan bombings
23rd May 2012
The annual wreath-laying ceremony took place at the memorial stone in Talbot Street on 17th May where the prayers were led by Rev. Philip Bradley, Adm., Milltown. Pat Fay, master of ceremonies, introduced the Lord Mayor of Dublin, Cllr. Andrew Montague, who gave a short address. This year's oration was delivered by Cormac Ó Dúlacháin, S.C., legal adviser to JFF for the past 16 years. The names of the victims were read by Bernie McNally, injured survivor while another survivor, John Molloy, laid a wreath on behalf of JFF.
The commemorative Mass was con-celebrated by Dr. Diarmuid Martin, Archbishop of Dublin (see homily) along with Frs. Damian O'Rielly and Damian McNeice.
We have moved office
11th May 2012
Please note that we have left our offices in Lower Gardiner Street after more than a decade, due to a lack of funding.
The new address is:
Kilmartin Lane, Hollystown, Dublin 15.
Our other details remain the same, that is the telephone number continues to be (01) 8554300 and our email address is firstname.lastname@example.org. Please update your records accordingly.
38th anniversary of the
Dublin and Monaghan bombings
Public event details - 17th May 2012
2nd May 2012
A wreath-laying ceremony with take place at the Talbot Street Memorial (near Connolly Train Station) on Thursday, 17th May 2012 at 11.30am. The prayers will be led by Rev. Philip Bradley, Adm., Milltown and the annual address will be given this year by Cormac Ó Dúlacháin SC.
The anniversary mass will be celebrated by the Archbishop of Dublin, Dr. Diarmuid Martin, in St. Mary's Pro-Cathedral, Marborough Street, Dublin at 12.45pm
As always, the public are encouraged to attend these events and show their solidarity with the bereaved families and injured survivors.
Good Friday Agreement Committee presses Secretary of State for N.I. on non-disclosure of British documents
9th February 2012
Members of the Joint Oireachtas Committee on the Implementation of the Good Friday Agreement press the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, Mr. Owen Paterson, on the continuing non-disclosure of British government documents relating to the cross-border bombings of the 1970s.
During his presentation to the committee on 2nd February, several members pressed Mr. Paterson on the failure of the British government to disclose relevant documentation.
His response was very disappointing. He told the committee that the Foreign & Commonwealth Secretary, Mr. William Hague, "had assured his counterpart here that we have made available the synopsis that is relevant to this case".
It appears that Mr. Paterson is referring to a 10 page letter to Judge Barron from former Secretary of State, Dr. John Reid, dated 26th February 2002. Judge Barron expressed his dissatisfaction and frustration with the lack of information contained in this letter. He repeatedly requested the British government for access to the documents themselves but, on every occassion, he was refused.
Furthermore, the small amount of information provided to Judge Barron was in relation to the Dublin-Monaghan and Dundalk bombings only. The British government failed to respond to all requests for information on the Dublin bombings of 1972 and 1973, the Belturbet and Castleblayney bombings.
Justice for the Forgotten furnished all these details to Mr. Paterson when we met him in October 2010 so he well aware of exactly what is required.
He actually told the committee, without a trace of irony, that the British government "has been completely straight and up-front - at every opportunity we have made information available".
Senate supports call for access to British government documents
9th February 2012
The following motion was raised in Seanad Éireann on Thursday, 2nd February by Senator Maurice Cummins and was agreed unanimously.
That Seanad Éireann,
recalling the Statements in this House on 7 July 2004 and on 20 February 2008;
notes the interim and final reports of the sub-Committee of the Joint Committee on Justice, Equality, Defence and Womens Rights on the report of the Independent Commission of Inquiry into the Dublin and Monaghan Bombings and the three related Barron Reports, including the Inquiry into the Bombing of Kays Tavern, Dundalk, and commends the sub-Committee for its work;
expresses its solidarity with the families of those who died or were injured in the Dublin and Monaghan bombings and in all the atrocities that were inquired into by Judge Henry Barron;
notes that the question of obtaining access to information held by the Government of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland on the bombings has been pursued for many years;
requests the Government to continue to raise the matter with the British Government and to press it to comply with this request and reaffirms the support of Members on all sides of this House; and
acknowledges that the co-operation being sought is taking place in the context of transformed relationships on this island and between Ireland and Britain based on mutual respect, on partnership and on friendship.
Question put and agreed to.
An Appeal from Justice For The Forgotten
30th January 2012
In order to continue with the important work of representing and supporting the bereaved families and survivors of the Dublin and Monaghan Bombings, the Dublin Bombings of 1972-1973, the Belturbet, Dundalk and Castleblayney Bombings and the Miami Showband Massacre, Justice For The Forgotten finds it necessary issue this urgent appeal for financial assistance.
Just over a year ago, in December, 2010, Justice for the Forgotten, while retaining its own name and identity, merged with The Pat Finucane Centre. Fortunately, The Pat Finucane Centre succeeded in procuring Peace 111 funding from the Special EU Programmes Body (SEUPB) for the next 30 months i.e. up until June, 2014. This funding covers the cost of all salaries and travel expenses (including the undersigned) together with the running costs of the Derry and Armagh offices but excludes the Dublin office. The reason given for this exclusion is that our Dublin location is outside the geographical remit of SEUPB. The running costs of the Dublin office (including rent at €12,000) for the next 12 months will be approximately of €17,000.
Our work in the coming year will include pursuing the issue of state collusion in The Miami Showband murders, as uncovered by the Historical Enquiries Team (HET), with the Office of the Police Ombudsman of Northern Ireland (OPONI) and the Prosecution Service in Northern Ireland, maintaining pressure on the British Government to release the documents it withheld from the Barron Inquiries and undertaking, with the Pat Finucane Centre, a major cross-Border project Recovery of Living Memory Archive.
We would be most grateful for any assistance you can provide to enable us to continue with this essential work. If you would like to help, please get in touch with Justice for the Forgotten through the contact details below.
Tel: 00353 (1) 855 4300
18th January 2012
Monaghan meeting with relatives and Oireachtas Committee
Justice for the Forgotten - The Pat Finucane Centre
The bereaved families of those killed in the Monaghan bomb on 17th May 1974 met with members of the Joint Oireachtas Good Friday Agreement Implementation Committee on Thursday, 12th January 2012, in the Westenra Hotel, Monaghan.
During the meeting, which was held at the Committee's request, the families raised their concerns about the continued non-disclosure of relevant documents by the British authorities, which had been withheld from Judge Henry Barron (see Barron Inquiries in the Publications section).
The meeting was very positive and the Committee promised to raise the matter with the Taoiseach and to urge him to bring pressure to bear on the British PM, David Cameron.
14th December 2011
The Miami Showband Families' response to the HET report
Justice for the Forgotten - The Pat Finucane Centre
The bereaved families and survivors of the Miami Showband attack have hosted a press conference in Buswell's Hotel, Molesworth Street, Dublin today. The families have recieved a report from the Historical Enquiries Team into the murders of their loved ones: Tony Geraghty, Brian McCoy and Fran O'Toole.
The murders occurred in the early hours of 31st July 1975 as the Miami showband was returning home to Dublin following a gig in the Castle Ballroom, Banbridge, Co. Down. They were flagged down at a bogus British military checkpoint at Buskhill on the main road to Newry.
Tony Geraghty was 24 years old and a native of Crumlin, Dublin.
He was lead guitarist with the band.
The Historical Enquiries Team was established by the Police Service of Northern Ireland to re-examine all deaths attributable to The Troubles between 1968 and 1998.
Here is the families' response in a separate page or as a downloadable pdf document:
Details of the HET's finding relating to Robin Jackson, a notorious UVF loyalist:
06th October 2011
Former Taoiseach was disbelieving of British cooperation with Barron inquiries (wikileaks cable)
Accoring to a cable dated 1st June 2006, from the American embassy in Dublin, during a meeting between former Taoiseach Bertie Ahern and US Special Envoy Mitchell Reis, Ahern expressed the view that the UK did not cooperate fully with the Barron commission's investigation into the 1974 Dublin and Monaghan bombings.
It was during a conversation regarding the case of Pat Finuncance that the issue arose:
"The Taoiseach said that the entire parliament was united in opposition to the UK approach. Parliament does not believe the UK will give all evidence because, in its view, the UK did not cooperate fully with the Barron commission's investigation into the 1974 Dublin and Monaghan bombings. The Taoiseach said that the GOI wants the UK to provide evidence acknowledging its involvement in Finucane's murder and it wants to know how high in the UK government collusion went. He said if the UK were to provide the information, it would only grab the headlines for a few hours because "everyone knows the UK was involved."
This is the first time that we have had confirmation that this was the official view of the Irish government of the day.
You can see the original cable contents online at the various wikileaks related sites, for instance here, look for cable ID 05DUBLIN657. The relevant section of the cable is 10 (c).
11th August 2011
Photographic Archive on Dublin City Public Libraries Site
Dublin City Public Libraries have made a collection of photographic material on the aftermath of the Dublin Bombings of May 1974 available online. These photographs were taken by the Dublin Corporation official photographer on the day after the events, on 18th May 1974. The images show the streets and buildings affected by the bombings and give a clear picture of the devastation caused to the fabric of the city.
23rd June 2011
Meeting with British Ambassador (21st June 2011)
Justice for the Fogotten met with the British Ambassador, Mr. Julian King, on 21st June 2011. We urged him to impress upon his Prime Minister and Government the necessity of making their undisclosed files available to an independent, international judicial figure for assessment. The Ambassador promised to convey our representations to the British authorities.
25th May 2011
Response by Taoiseach to Dáil questions on his meeting wth British PM David Cameron on 24th May 2011
You can see the Taoiseach's response to questions in the Dáil regarding his recent meeting with British PM David Cameron at the link below to the Oireachtas website:
25th May 2011
New all-party motion on British Government documents passes in Dáil
A new all-party moton on the undisclosed files held by the British Government was agreed unanimously and debated over two evenings on the 17th and 18th of May 2011. The motion was also supported by the Technical Group of Independent TDs.
The motion of July 2008 which was also adopted unanimously, was recalled, in which:
- the interim and final reports of the sub-Committee of the Joint Committee on Justice, Equality, Defence and Womens Rights on the report of the Independent Commission of Inquiry into the Dublin-Monaghan Bombings and the three related Barron Reports, including the Inquiry into the Bombing of Kays Tavern, Dundalk, and commends the sub-Committee for its work;
- urged the Government of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland to allow access by an independent, international judicial figure to all original documents held by the British Government relating to the atrocities that occurred in this jurisdiction and which were inquired into by Judge Barron, for the purposes of assessing said documents with the aim of assisting in the resolution of these crimes; and
directed the Clerk of the Dáil to communicate the text of this Resolution, together with copies of the aforementioned reports, to the House of Commons of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, with a request that the matter be considered by the House of Commons;
The new motion, moved by Deputy Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin on Tuesday, 17th May 2011, further stated that it:
"notes that the question of obtaining access to information held by the British Government on the bombings has been pursued for many years;
requests the Government to continue to raise the matter with the British Government and to press it to comply with the request of Dáil Éireann and reaffirms the support of Members on all sides of this House; and
acknowledges that the cooperation being sought is taking place in the context of transformed relationships on this island and between Ireland and Britain based on mutual respect, on partnership and on friendship."
17th May 2011
Margaret Urwin's Address at 37th Anniversary Commemoration on 17th MAY 2011
Thank you all for coming here today to mark the deaths of 34 people who perished in this city and in the town of Monaghan, 37 years ago.
None of them was among what we might call the high and mighty of this land - but all had an absolute right to life - and all were loved and are still deeply missed by their families.
Every day of their lives, the bereaved families live with the pain of their loss but today is particularly painful for both them and those who were injured.
Remarks, made recently by a national broadcaster, who said a 37th anniversary is not really important shows how little they understand- or care - for the grief of families bereaved by such a horrific attack.
The comment also, of course, misses the point entirely. The Dublin and Monaghan bombings cost the lives of 34 men, women and babies, including an Italian and a French citizen.
It was the greatest loss of life in a single day during the Troubles. Proportionate to our population, this was truly Ireland's 9/11. Would anyone dare to suggest that any anniversary of 9/11 should be overlooked? I dont think so.
This anniversary today is remarkable as it takes place at the same time the British monarch arrives for her first ever visit to this part of the island. Her prime minister, David Cameron, will accompany her and is due to meet our Taoiseach, Enda Kenny tomorrow.
We believe this historic occasion affords Mr. Cameron with a wonderful, a golden, opportunity to make a genuinely significant gesture of reconciliation. We are appealing to him today to announce his intention to open the files that were withheld from Judge Henry Barron to a new judicial inquiry.
Judge Barron was investigating, not alone the Dublin and Monaghan bombings, but also those of Dublin 1972 and 1973, Belturbet, Dublin Airport, Dundalk and Castleblayney as well as the murders of John Francis Green, Christy Phelan and Séamus Ludlow.
Dáil Éireann adopted a unanimous all-Party resolution in July 2008 urging the British Government to release these files. It was passed to the House of Commons for consideration nearly three years ago but no action whatsoever has been taken.
This is insulting to our Dáil, let alone the dead we remember here today and their families. British stonewalling inevitably prompts a question what do they have to hide?
We urge our Taoiseach, when he meets with Mr. Cameron, to impress upon him that the opening of the files would send out a powerful message of reconciliation to the people of Ireland.
It would slot into place the final piece of the jigsaw for the bereaved families and survivors of the cross-Border bombings of the 1970s. This must happen soon because, sadly, with each year that passes, family members are dying without ever hearing the truth.
In the High Court in London, lawyers acting for four Kenyans who claim they were horribly tortured by British forces during the Mau Mau uprising in the 1950's are currently arguing for the release of documents.
The British Foreign Secretary, William Hague, told the House of Commons earlier this month that they would now be released subject to legal exemptions. He declared that this was essential to uphold Britains moral authority as a nation. He claimed that London's willingness to shine a light on its faults and to learn from the mistakes of history is an enduring strength of British democracy.What is right for the Kenyans must also be right for us in Ireland.
Prime Minister Cameron showed great courage when he told the House of Commons and the Bloody Sunday families gathered in Derry in the Guildhall Square, after the publication of the Saville report that it was right to pursue the truth with vigour and thoroughness and that openness and frankness about the past, however painful, do not make us weaker, they make us stronger.
So, on this momentous occasion, our plea to him is: pursue the truth, make us stronger, open the files.
16th May 2011
Open letter to the British Monarch
The bereaved families and survivors of the Dublin and Monaghan bombings have addressed an open letter to Queen Elizabeth 11 on the occasion of her visit to Ireland on the 37th anniversary of the bombings - see below.
Dear Queen Elizabeth,
Your visit tomorrow is a sign of improving relations between our two islands and peoples.
Thirty-seven years ago, on 17th May 1974, a series of no-warning car bombs murdered 34 men, women and babies in Dublin and Monaghan. It was the greatest loss of life in a single day of the Troubles.
We are appealing, through you, to your Prime Minister, David Cameron, to mark the occasion of this historic visit by a genuinely significant gesture of reconciliation.
We urge him to open the files that were withheld from Judge Henry Barron's inquiries into the Dublin and Monaghan bombings and all other cross-Border bombings perpetrated in this jurisdiction.
All requests, including a cross-party resolution adopted by Dáil Éireann on 10th July 2008, have so far falen on deaf ears. Without this move, deeply troublesome questions remain unanswered.
The Joint Oireachtas Committee on Justice, Equality, Defence and Women's Rights, which examined Judge Barron's reports concluded:
' We are dealing with acts of international terrorism that were colluded in by the British security forces.'
On 15th June 2010, David Cameron made a historic gesture in apologising for Bloody Sunday when he told the House of Commons:
'It is right to pursue the truth with vigour and thoroughness. Openness and frankness about the past, however painful, do not make us weaker, they make us stronger'.
The sky did not fall in. Rather, it led to an unprecedented act of reconciliation by the Protestant churches in Derry.
So on this momentous occasion, our plea to Prime Minister Cameron is:
Pursue the truth with vigour make us all stronger open up the files
The picture above is of the open letter from Justice for the Forgotten that appeared on the front page of the Irish Times on 16th May 2011.
Justice for the Forgotten
11 May 2011
37th Anniversary of the Dublin and Monaghan bombings public event details
The wreath-laying ceremony will take place at the Talbot Street Memorial, (near Connolly Train Station) at 11.30 am, on the 17th May 2011.
As always, the public are very much welcome to attend. We ask that no flags, banners or emblems should be displayed.
At 12.45 pm the anniversary mass will be held in St. Mary's Pro-Cathedral, Marlborough Street, Dublin 1.
10 May 2011
Dublin City and Monaghan Town Councils support call for British files to be opened
Both council bodies in Monaghan Town and Dublin City have supported our call for the British government to open up the files they posses relating to the 1974 Dublin and Monaghan bombings.
The motion below was passed unanimously at the meeting of Dublin City Council last night (9th May 2011):
"This City Council calls on the British government to pass on the files relating to the Dublin/Monaghan bombings in 1974 in order to help put closure to the investigation for the families who lost loved ones in the bombings and calls upon the Taoiseach End Kenny to demand of the British Prime Minister David Cameron that he comply with the unanimous request of Dáil Éireann of 10 July 2008 to "allow access by an independent, international judicial figure to all original documents held by the British government relating to the atrocities...inquired into by Judge Barron"; and noting that the visit to our City of the Queen of England coincides with the 37th anniversary of the Dublin and Monaghan bombings we add our voices to that demand for justice and truth.
At the April monthly meeting of Monaghan Town Council the members also supported our appeal calling on the British government to open up the files and make available the documentation concerning the 1974 Monaghan and Dublin bombings. A letter from Monaghan Town Council regarding this has been issued to the British Embassy.
13th April 2011
VISIT OF BRITAIN'S QUEEN ELIZABETH II
Justice for the Forgotten believes the extraordinary coincidence of Britain's Queen Elizabeth arriving in Ireland on the 37th anniversary of the Dublin and Monaghan bombings presents her Prime Minister, David Cameron, with a golden opportunity to make a genuinely significant gesture of reconciliation. It should enable him to announce his intention to open the files and make available the documentation that was withheld from Judge Henry Barron during the course of his inquiries into the Dublin and Monaghan bombings and the other cross-Border bombings that were perpetrated in this jurisdiction in the 1970s.
The Dublin and Monaghan bombings, in which 34 men, women and babies were killed, caused the greatest loss of life in a single day during the entire period of the Troubles.
The British authorities not only refused to co-operate with Judge Barron but have also ignored repeated requests from former Taoisigh and especially the all-Party motion that was unanimously adopted by Dáil Éireann in July 2008, which urged them:
'to allow access by an independent, international judicial figure to all original documents held by the British Government relating to the atrocities that occurred in this jurisdiction and which were inquired into by Judge Barron, for the purposes of assessing said documents with the aim of assisting in the resolution of these crimes'.
We remember Prime Minister Cameron's words last June when he apologised for Bloody Sunday. He told the House of Commons:
'It is right to pursue the truth with vigour and thoroughness...openness and frankness about the past, however painful, do not make us weaker, they make us stronger'.
In anticipation of this momentous occasion our plea to Prime Minister Cameron is:
Pursue the truth with vigour - make us all stronger - open up the files
Note to Editors:
We will be encouraging the public to attend our dignified wreath-laying ceremony on the anniversary (17th May) at the memorial in Talbot Street but no flags or banners should be displayed.
For further details please contact -
Tel : 00353 (1)
21 December 2010
JUSTICE FOR THE FORGOTTEN PAT FINUCANE CENTRE
Justice for the Forgotten is pleased to announce that it is up and running again as part of the Pat Finucane Centre, a development which both organisations view as very positive and we are confident will strengthen cross-Border ties. Our very existence was threatened when funding was withdrawn last July.
Speaking today Margaret Urwin said,
"We are very pleased to be part of a network and team with offices in Dublin, Armagh and Derry. The issues that affect victims of the Northern conflict are similar on both sides of the border and we should remember that some 130 people died in the Republic due to the conflict.
We have had a close working relationship with the Pat Finucane Centre for more than a decade as many of the bereaved families we both represent are victims of the Glenanne gang, so this new development can be seen as a natural progression in that relationship.
From the point of view of Justice for the Forgotten, this move should see an end to the isolation we have often felt operating south of the Border. Our campaigning and lobbying work will continue as before but within the legal and organisational structure of the PFC."
Speaking on behalf of the PFC Paul OConnor said,
"We believe that the hundreds of families who seek support and advocacy from JFF and the PFC will also benefit from the merger of research skills, knowledge and experience that this development entails. Its a very encouraging and constructive change.
Short-term funding has been provided but it is essential that the Pat Finucane Centre receives long-term funding on a cross-Border basis so that we may complete all our outstanding work."
For further information contact
|DOWNLOAD FREE ACROBAT READER|
| HOME |
Copyright © Justice For The Forgotten. All rights reserved.