Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 24 April 2014

Richard Haass faces anger from Bloody Sunday relatives

Bloody Sunday relative Kate Nash confronts Richard Haas during his visit to Derry
Bloody Sunday relative Kate Nash confronts Richard Haas during his visit to Derry

Former US diplomat Richard Haass has been confronted by angry relatives of Bloody Sunday victims who urged him to reject an amnesty.

He had been walking through a hotel foyer in Londonderry when Kate Nash, whose brother William was killed by soldiers during the 1972 massacre, challenged him over comments made by Attorney General John Larkin.

Along with relatives of some of the other Bloody Sunday victims, she claimed the main beneficiaries of any amnesty would be those who perpetrated State killings.

"How can there be an amnesty for murder?" she asked Dr Haass yesterday.

She added: "(When) you've taken a person's life away, you have taken everything. Look at the heartbreak left behind, then you get treated this way for almost 42 years by the justice system.

"There was no police inquiry back then as such, and then they drag you along all those years, all that campaigning, and then at the end of all that they are going to tell us, 'Let's draw a line under it all'.

"John Larkin might be able to – but has anyone of his family ever been murdered, does he know how this feels?"

Afterwards she explained her anger. "What are they trying to do, draw a line under victims, draw a line under my brother? We are not going to let that happen," she said.

Among those who were invited to meet Dr Haass were the business leaders, the Apprentice Boys of Derry and residents' groups who brokered a parades agreement unique to the city which facilitates both communities.

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