IRA victims: Why is Dublin blanking Kingsmills inquest?

Front Page of The News Letter Tuesday 6th January 1976 reporting how ten protestant work men were shot dead by the Provisional IRA.
Front Page of The News Letter Tuesday 6th January 1976 reporting how ten protestant work men were shot dead by the Provisional IRA.

A south Armagh victims group has asked the Irish government why it has stonewalled a Belfast inquest into the Kingsmills massacre for over six months.

The Kingsmills massacre of 1976 saw 10 Protestant textile workers shot dead at the side of a road in Co Armagh by the IRA.

The van used in the attack was taken from Co Louth and families of those killed believe the Republic was used as a safe haven by the gunmen.

Yesterday victims group FAIR said it finds the Irish government’s decision to support the reopening of the case of 10 ‘hooded men’ against the British Government “intolerable”.

A spokesman said: “This case is being taken back to the European Court for human rights violation in Northern Ireland. Is this the same Irish government that has continually refused to engage with the Kingsmills inquest for over six months? To date the Garda still have not replied with the information we know they hold in relation to the IRA gang.”

Last month barrister Neil Rafferty, acting for the victims, told the inquest he was “quite simply shocked” after hearing no substantive response, other than acknowledgement letters, had been received from the Garda after requests over six months by the Coroners Service for Northern Ireland.

The Garda, taoiseach’s office and Irish Department of Foreign Affairs yesterday failed to offer any comment.