Social Democratic and Labour Party Leader Colum Eastwood MP has welcomed the findings of the Ballymurphy Inquest which have vindicated the decades long campaign for truth by the families of the victims.
The Foyle MP said that the families have demonstrated an unshakable dignity throughout their long journey toward truth.
Colum Eastwood MP said:
“The findings of the Ballymurphy Inquest today are an absolute vindication of the long campaign for truth that these families have waged over fifty years. They have stood against attempts to blacken the names of their loved ones, attempts to deny the truth and rewrite the past. Today they can stand proudly in the knowledge that their friends and family were entirely innocent of wrongdoing and the whole world knows it.
“I want to thank Mrs Justice Keegan for her forensic explanation of the inquest findings and the work she has done over the course of months of harrowing testimony.
“Listening to the events that led to the murder of innocent people in Ballymurphy fifty years ago was heartbreaking. The finding that there was ‘basic inhumanity’ in the treatment of people in West Belfast during those three days is stark but hardly surprising when victims shot by British Army soldiers were left to suffer critical wounds without medical assistance. Inhuman is the right word.
“Today the Ballymurphy families can stand proudly in the knowledge that their friends and family were entirely innocent of wrongdoing and the whole world knows it. But it should shame the British establishment that they forced innocent people to fight for so long and made that journey so difficult.
“Today, the British Government is seeking to make it more difficult for families to secure the truth about what happened to their loved ones. The experience of the Ballymurphy families, and all those who have experienced loss, should remind us to be vigilant against those efforts to deny truth and accountability.”