Belfast Telegraph

Manchester bomb injured 'will be suffering for years to come', says Enniskillen bomb survivor

A man who was seriously injured in the Enniskillen bomb says those hurt in the Manchester Area blast will be "suffering for years to come".

Jim Dixon (80) has had more than 40 operations since the IRA bombing of a Remembrance Day service in Enniskillen in 1987.

He has extended his sympathies to the estimated 62 people who were injured after a suicide bomber detonated his deadly cargo at an Ariana Grande concert at Manchester Arena on Monday night.

But he became emotional as he warned the aftershock of the bomb will go on for years.

"My sympathies go out to the people who have suffered horrendously. It doesn't end today for them," Mr Dixon told BBC Radio Ulster's Stephen Nolan.

"There will be years of suffering, I have every sympathy with that.

"Those people in Manchester will be suffering for years and years to come."

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Co Monaghan born Mr Dixon added that he does not distinguish between the IRA and ISIS, who has claimed the Manchester Arena bombing.

"I am from the Republic of Ireland, there would have been a united Ireland years ago if it hadn't been for the IRA," he said.

"IRA has done nothing only murder people. Innocent lives blown to bits, what humanity has the IRA got? They are not human beings, they are animals."

He described how he was feeling at the news of another bomb plunging people into pain as "horrendous".

Mr Dixon also described the actions of Sinn Fein's northern leader Michelle O'Neill in condemning the Manchester Area bomb as "totally farcical".

Comment: So, Michelle O'Neill, just when did it become unacceptable to bomb Manchester?

Mr Dixon previously spoke about how he had wished the doctors would "put him out of his misery".

He was hit in the face by part of a building during the chaos of the Enniskillen bomb which smashed his skull, and previously told the Nolan Show how he could feel his skull and mouth "caving in". He also suffered broken ribs, a smashed hip, broken pelvis and badly smashed legs,

"I was told by the surgeons that I never should have survived," he previously told the News Letter.

"After the bomb I was so badly injured they couldn’t give me painkillers. I couldn’t breathe I was so weak and I just pleaded with the surgeons to hit me over the head with a hatchet and put me out of my misery.

"Death is the decent thing. Dying and not fit to die is something else. I never could believe that there could be such fear and terror in a person’s body. It was as if I was placed in the very crypt of hell."

Twelve people died in the 1987 Enniskillen bomb, and 63 were injured.

Mr Dixon has dedicated his life to helping other victims and has served as chairman of the Ely Centre victims’ support group.

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