DUP MLA Diane Dodds has written to the Secretary of State Brandon Lewis asking him to meet with the family of Ian Sproule who was murdered by the Provisional IRA through alleged collusion with members of the Garda. Her call follows the British-Irish Intergovernmental Conference on Thursday where the governments agreed "a process of intensive engagement" was needed on Northern Ireland legacy issues.
The Upper Bann MLA said, "Everyone accepts there is a need to deal with the legacy of our troubled past. We have seen progress in recent times in relation to the Victims' Payment Scheme, although it is deeply disappointing that it required court rulings before some moved to progress this much needed scheme.
There must be a proportionate and comprehensive approach to dealing with the past which is both victim led and victim centred. If the approach is to be proportionate then it must reflect the factual position that terrorists were responsible for 90% of deaths during the troubles. If the approach is to be comprehensive then the issue of collusion between Garda officers and the IRA must also be addressed.
It is thirty years since Ian Sproule was murdered in Killen near Castlederg and allegations remain that members of the Garda Siochana colluded with the Provisional IRA by passing on his personal information. I have worked with the Sproule family and SEFF to highlight this case and to eventually secure a meeting with Garda and Irish Government representatives. I have written to Brandon Lewis today asking him to also meet with the Sproule family and I hope he will not only take up that invitation but do so quickly.
The murder of Lord Justice and Lady Gibson is another case where serious questions remain and was raised with the Irish Government in recent months. If the discussions on legacy between the two Governments are to be meaningful then such cases cannot be ignored. I look forward to the UK Government engaging with victims such as the Sproule family and seeking inquiries to finally secure truth and justice in relation to the murder of UK citizens."