Belfast Telegraph

Ombudsman 'should get co-operation'

Everyone should co-operate with the Police Ombudsman, the Prime Minister said today, as an MP called for families to receive "truth and justice" on the 20th anniversary of a pub shooting in Northern Ireland.

SDLP MP Margaret Ritchie, said "all UK police services must co-operate fully with their oversight authorities both to the letter and the spirit" as part of the investigation into the killings.

Speaking during Prime Minister's Questions, the MP for South Down said: "Exactly 20 years ago to the day gunmen went into a pub in my constituency in a place called Loughinisland and killed six men and made widespread claims about collusion and police cover up.

"The families have never received truth and justice. Only two weeks ago, the police ensured that the Police Ombudsman's investigation was stalled. Does the Prime Minister agree with me that all UK police services must co-operate fully with their oversight authorities both to the letter and the spirit to ensure that families that I represent in Loughinisland receive truth and justice."

Mr Cameron replied: "I agree with her that everyone should co-operate with the Police Ombudsman and I believe the Police Ombudsman system in Northern Ireland is actually now a model that other countries are looking to follow. It's something I discussed quite recently with the Taoiseach in terms of what happens in the Republic of Ireland.

"So we have got a system there that works, we have the historical inquiry teams which are also working, but I very much hope that the work can continue between the parties in Northern Ireland to discuss the Haass principles and the Haass ideas for flags, parades and the past and I hope that everyone can come together and sort these issues out."

Football supporters were watching the Republic of Ireland play Italy in the US in 1994 in The Heights Bar in the Co Down village of Loughinisland when loyalist gunmen burst in and opened fire.

Six men were killed and five others were injured in the Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF) outrage.

No one has ever been charged with the murders but a renewed investigation has begun following a review of the case by the Police Service of Northern Ireland's Serious Crime Review Team.


From Belfast Telegraph