Justice has no monetary value, insists IRA victim

File photo dated 22/11/74 of the outside of the Mulberry Tree pub in Birmingham, the day after it was bombed
File photo dated 22/11/74 of the outside of the Mulberry Tree pub in Birmingham, the day after it was bombed

A row has broken out between IRA victims in England over how to deal with the legacy of terrorist attacks.

Julie Hambleton, whose 18-year-old sister Maxine was killed by a bomb in Birmingham in 1974, is pressing for justice.

Yesterday, she issued a stiff challenge to Colin and Wendy Parry, whose son Tim was killed by a bomb in Warrington in 1983.

In a report in The Sunday Telegraph about potential compensation from Libya for IRA victims, Mr Parry said that there was “not a day goes by that we don’t think how he [Tim] would have grown up”.

He added: “It is not easy to rationalise how money can compensate for what you have lost. But there is no other penalty available than financial.”

The peace foundation Mr Parry leads aims to enable victims “to use their traumatic experiences to do something positive” and also helps young people turn away from violence.

But seizing upon his reported comments, Ms Hambleton wrote to Mr Parry yesterday saying that “it appears that you are now placing a monetary value upon justice, something many people find abhorrent”.

She added: “My family would have to disagree with you most profoundly on this matter Mr Parry. There is only one penalty available and that is for ‘justice’ to be served, where the democratic and constitutional servants engage in exercising and obtaining justice for all citizens, either within the precedent of the United Kingdom criminal legal system or by the offices of European Union justice.

“Justice does not mean compensation. Justice means truth.”

In October, police intervened to stop a verbal exchange between Mr Parry and Ms Hambleton’s brother Brian at an event where Sinn Fein president Gerry Adams was speaking.

Mr Parry said at the time: “It hurts that somebody would be so unaware of what we do that they could accuse me of kowtowing to terrorists.

“I don’t do that and I never will, but I recognise that the armed struggle is over and we have to build new ways. That’s my simple position.”

Mr Parry told the News Letter yesterday that he did not wish to comment.