Eastwood: No amendments can fix Legacy Bill

legacy colum eastwood

Social Democratic and Labour Party Leader Colum Eastwood MP has said that no amendments can fix the British government's broken Legacy Bill.

Mr Eastwood was speaking after a series of new amendments to the legislation were published.

He called on the British government to listen to the widespread opposition to the Bill.

Foyle MP Mr Eastwood said:

“The amendments from the British government to their Legacy Bill are no more than an attempt to paper over the cracks of ill-thought out and totally irreparable legislation. This is one of the few issues that unites everyone in the North from political parties to victims’ groups, there is nothing that can be done to make this legislation palatable and we will oppose it at every turn.

“There can be no hiding place for those who committed the most unspeakable crimes during our troubled past, whether they be state forces or paramilitaries. This legislation seeks to provide the British government with an opportunity to cover up their own murky past, while closing down routes to victims and survivors who still hold out hope of attaining truth and justice.

“We need to be strong and united in our opposition to this Bill, I welcome the commitment from Tánaiste Micheál Martin that the Irish government will consider taking the matter to Europe if the British government proceeds with these plans. The SDLP has also secured a commitment from Labour Leader Kier Starmer that his government will repeal this legislation should he win the next General Election.

“The only way we are going to deal with our past is through cooperation, engagement and agreement on all sides. It’s deeply disappointing that repeated opportunities to find an agreed way forward, including at Stormont House, have been missed. The British government cannot be allowed to trample over the human rights of victims and survivors and the SDLP will continue to fight alongside them until this legislation is defeated.”

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