Omagh investigation announcement welcomed

DUP Legacy Spokesperson Emma Little Pengelly has welcomed the Secretary of State’s announcement of an independent statutory into the Omagh bombing.

By Emma Little-Pengelly MLA

Lagan Valley

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She said, “Sir Jeffrey Donaldson has previously met with the families of those murdered in the Omagh bomb to support their call and the recommendation of the courts that there should be an Article 2 compliant investigation.

The terrorists who left the bomb, did so on a street full of shoppers on a Saturday afternoon. This was an attack that whilst perpetrated within Northern Ireland, was planned, prepared and transported across the border from within the Republic. This was recognised by Mr Justice Horner’s conclusion in the application for a judicial review.

He outlined the “real advantage” of a simultaneous Article 2 compliant investigation proceeding in the Republic of Ireland. The terrorist activity crossed the border and any investigation requires action on both sides of that border to be fully effective. This is something that has always been recognised by the families.

The opportunity for both truth and justice is something that should never be denied to anyone who has suffered at the hands of terrorists. The United Kingdom Government has taken this step today. The Irish Government should now make clear whether they will fulfil the wish of the families and advance the opportunity for truth and justice by announcing a simultaneous equivalent investigation.”

West Tyrone MLA Tom Buchanan said, “This is a welcome announcement by the Secretary of State today. It represents a step forward for the Omagh families who are to be commended for their determination and courage. However, they have always been clear in their vision that this cross-border attack required investigations to take place on both sides of the border. The UK Government has announced that an Article 2 compliant investigation will now take place and the onus is on the Irish Government to provide a simultaneous investigation.

The need to listen to the voices of victims, engage with them and not run away from their responsibility to help uncover the truth.”

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