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Calls for £17m tax from Gadaffi's frozen assets to go to IRA victims

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Meeting: Simon Hoare has summoned William Shawcross before MP committee

Meeting: Simon Hoare has summoned William Shawcross before MP committee

Meeting: Simon Hoare has summoned William Shawcross before MP committee

Millions of pounds in taxes paid on the frozen assets of Colonel Gadaffi should be used to compensate victims of IRA bombs that used Libya-supplied Semtex, an MP has said.

Westminster's Northern Ireland Affairs Committee has summoned William Shawcross, who wrote an in-depth report on the Libyan dictator's IRA links and the compensation issue, to appear before it later this month.

His report was submitted to the Foreign Office in May 2020, but the Government has so far refused to publish it. Committee chairman Simon Hoare said despite "repeated public and private correspondence and written and oral parliamentary questions", the Foreign Office has "taken no substantive action and is apparently determined to suppress your report and the matter".

Ulster Unionist peer Lord Empey said: "This is a sorry saga of Government inaction for several decades. The latest attempt to thwart the publication of the Shawcross report indicates a lack of will on the part of Government to see justice done for the victims."

Last month peers were told that £17m was paid to the Treasury in tax from the late dictator's frozen assets.

North Antrim MP Ian Paisley told the Sunday Telegraph: "This staggering amount of money ought to be used to compensate without further delay those individuals who suffered at the hands of Gadaffi-sponsored IRA terrorism."

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