Belfast Telegraph

Martin McGuinness cleared by Bloody Sunday Saville probe

Northern Ireland's Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness has been cleared of provoking soldiers on Bloody Sunday by an official report into the killings of 14 civilians.

The report found members of the official IRA fired a number of shots, though it was concluded it was the British paratroopers who shot first during the civil rights march in Derry on January 30 1972.

Mr McGuinness, second in command of the provisional IRA in Derry that day, was "probably armed with a Thompson submachine gun", the Saville Report said.

It said though it is possible he fired the weapon, this cannot be proved. The report concluded: "He did not engage in any activity that provided any of the soldiers with any justification for opening fire."

Mr McGuinness denied having a sub-machine gun. When asked about the Saville finding that it was probable that he had the weapon, he said: "No".

He said the report had cleared everybody in the city.

"He (Lord Saville) fully pointed the finger of blame for what happened directly at the British Parachute Regiment," he added.

No blame was placed by the Bloody Sunday Inquiry on the organisers of the march, the Northern Ireland Civil Rights Association.


From Belfast Telegraph