Belfast Telegraph

Federation ‘totally opposed’ to amnesties

By Michael McHugh

Giving terrorists or police an amnesty from prosecution in Northern Ireland would be a "monstrous injustice", the Police Federation for Northern Ireland has said.

Chairman Mark Lindsay added that it would be "a disrespectful and shameful act of betrayal" to link the names of officers with those of terrorists in the debate on legacy.

A total of 302 RUC officers were killed and many more injured during the Troubles.

The Government is consulting on mechanisms to address the fallout from the past.

Proposals don't include a statute of limitations, lobbied for by MPs, which would exempt soldiers and police from prosecution.

Addressing delegates yesterday, Mr Lindsay said: "Let me be clear: this organisation is totally opposed to any legislation which proposes an amnesty for any crime.

"That's any crime, whether committed by a police officer or terrorist from any side of the divide.

"Society must now decide whether the solution is a political solution or a criminal justice solution."

Mr Lindsay added: "If justice is to be done fairly, then society must move away from rumour, story-telling and political agenda and deal only with the facts in law.

"It would be the most monstrous injustice to our murdered men and women if we were to accept some half-baked idea that resulted in the names of our colleagues being sacrificed for the sake of political expediency.

"That would be the ultimate insult."

Belfast Telegraph

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