Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 17 April 2014

Fury over 'rewritten' McGurk's Bar massacre dossier

Rescuers, soldiers and civilians dig with bare hands in the smoking rubble of McGurk's bar, where 15 people died in a bomb blast in December 1971
Rescuers, soldiers and civilians dig with bare hands in the smoking rubble of McGurk's bar, where 15 people died in a bomb blast in December 1971

Relatives of those killed in one of Northern Ireland's worst terrorist atrocities have been "retraumatised" by learning a report into the bombing may have been rewritten, it has been claimed.

The families of victims of the McGurk's Bar massacre received a finalised version of the Historical Enquiries Team review after mounting a High Court challenge.

But their lawyers argued that instead of getting the redacted report, a different version may have been supplied.

Counsel for the Chief Constable acknowledged amendments were made to the "remodelled" dossier but insisted nothing has been held back. The dispute threatens to scupper an expected resolution of the legal action.

Fifteen people were murdered when the north Belfast pub was blown up by the UVF in 1971.

Barrister David Heraghty said: "We have not had the redacted report. We have had a rewritten report."

Outside court Kevin Winters, solicitor for Bridget Irvine who brought the legal challenge, said: "All of this has served to retraumatise them."

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