Dublin slammed on victims ‘bias’

Belfast solicitor Pat Finucane who was shot dead by loyalists.
Belfast solicitor Pat Finucane who was shot dead by loyalists.

A man whose brother was killed in the Kingsmills massacre has challenged the Irish Foreign Minister as to whether Pat Finucane was worth more than the ten men killed in that atrocity.

Colin Worton, whose brother was one of the ten civilians shot by the IRA in south Armagh in 1976 as they returned home from work, was speaking after Minister Charlie Flanagan told the Council of Europe that the UK should hold a public inquiry into the murder of Belfast solicitor Pat Finucane.

The UK government has officially acknowledged state collusion in his murder.

Mr Flanagan launched a blistering attack on the UK at the Council of Europe in Strasbourg this week, noting that it was now a year since the SHA had been signed.

“It is deeply regrettable that in the time since there has been little visible progress with establishing the legacy institutions provided for under the 2014 Stormont House Agreement,” he said. “The Irish Government shares the deep disappointment and frustration of victims and survivors of the Troubles, from all communities, who have had to wait for far too long for access to truth and justice.” He closed by calling for a public inquiry into the murder of Mr Finucane.

But Worton said the minister should “take a look at himself in the mirror”.

He added: “What happened to Pat Finucane was bad. But why does Dublin only ever press for investigations into his murder? Is it because he was educated that he is more important that the ten factory workers at Kingsmills?

“Despite many promises, the Irish government has released very little information to our inquest, despite repeated promises. Most of what they sent is newspaper clippings. So they have a queer cheek to come out with this.”

The Kingsmills inquest began asking for files from Dublin in May 2014 but it took almost a year and a half until the families finally knew what had been released; they were furious that the file consisted mainly of 60 pages of newspaper clippings.

Victims Campaigner Willie Frazer said information in a further 30 pages was already in the public domain.

Mr Frazer, who works closely with Mr Worton, said: “We would expect 30 pages on the ordinary hijacking of a minibus in Co Louth; but when the minibus was used in the one of the biggest atrocities of the Troubles we expect a lot more than that.”

Taoiseach Enda Kenny has said previously that the most sensitive Kingsmills files will not be released but may be inspected in Dublin by the Belfast coroner.

In a 1200 word statement Irish Foriegn Minister Charlie Flanagan told the Council of Europe this week there was;-

:: Frustration that the promised Historical Investigations Unit has not yet been set up in NI.

:: Called for “compromise” on the UK citing national security for its refusal to open up all Troubles related files

:: Complained about lack of funding for NI legacy inquests

:: Pressed for the fulfillment of a new unit to deal with 56 legacy inquests in NI.

:: Recommended a full public inquiry into the murder of Belfast solicitor Pat Finucane