Canary Wharf bomb survivor ‘honoured’ to lay wreath for murdered policewoman

Docklands Victims' Association President Jonathan Ganesh laying flowers at the Yvonne Fletcher memorial in London.
Docklands Victims' Association President Jonathan Ganesh laying flowers at the Yvonne Fletcher memorial in London.

A survivor of the Canary Wharf bombing which broke the IRA ceasefire has said he was honoured to have been invited to a commemoration of the 30th anniversary of the murder of a police officer outside the Libyan embassy in London.

Yvonne Fletcher was gunned down in St James’s Square in April 1984 as anti-Gaddafi protesters demonstrated outside the embassy.

Members of the Docklands Victims’ Association, including Jonathan Ganesh who was badly burned and injured in the 1996 bomb, attended the event alongside Yvonne’s friends and family and Metropolitan Police Commissioner Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe.

Having laid a wreath at the event last Thursday Jonathan told the News Letter those who lost their lives must not be forgotten.

“It was perhaps more poignant because 30 years have now passed,” he said. “I think it is very important that we do not forget this officer and that we do attend these sort of events. I was honoured to be invited. She paid the ultimate price while doing her job and trying to keep people safe.

Semtex used in the Canary Wharf explosion is thought to have come from Libya and Mr Ganesh said he and other victims of IRA terrorism resourced by Gaddafi had a lot in common.

“From our point of view Yvonne’s family has suffered as we have suffered at the hands of Gaddafi. We are now actively working together with Libyans who suffered under Gaddafi and I think it is important that we share our experiences and continue to push for recognition of what happened.”

To date Mr Ganesh, like many other victims, has received no compensation from the Libyan Government for what happened to him.

The Docklands Victims’ Association met a Libyan delegation in London earlier this month to discuss the issue.

Jonathan said he compares the IRA to the Gaddafi regime, saying they were “very effective at killing many innocent people”.

Speaking at the commemoration last week Met Commissioner Sir Bernard said: “We remain committed to bringing to justice those responsible for killing PC Fletcher.

“The anniversary will always remain a very sad day for the Metropolitan Police and a tragic event in policing history.”

Jonathan has previously said those who funded the IRA are in a way “more responsible” for the destruction they caused.

“They hid in the shadows; secretly supplied ammunition, semtex and waged a war on innocent victims on both sides of the community,” he said.