Belfast Telegraph

PM urged to compensate Libyan sponsored IRA victims with £17m tax

The scene following the Enniskillen bomb blast (PA)
The scene following the Enniskillen bomb blast (PA)

DUP deputy leader Nigel Dodds has urged Prime Minister Theresa May to use £17m in tax collected from Libyan assets in the UK to compensate IRA victims.

Mr Dodds was speaking during Prime Minister's Questions in the House of Commons on Wednesday.

It has emerged that the value of frozen Libyan assets held by the UK has risen to £12bn, with £5m a year collected by the Government in tax.

The Northern Ireland Affairs Committee conducted an inquiry which revealed the Government's multi-million-pound tax receipt from frozen assets.

Mr Dodds asked Mrs May if she would use the money to help victims and ensure a special representative, yet to be appointed, will work with victims to "attain the justice those victims rightly deserve".

The special representative is intended to help secure compensation from the Libyan Government for UK based victims.

In response to the comments Mrs May, who is set to leave office next month, said she would ensure the special representative "is able to make every effort to ensure the victims get what they are entitled" and that the representative works closely with them.

Speaking afterwards Mr Dodds said victims from across the UK were being forced to continue their campaign for justice, despite US citizens receiving compensation.

"This is a call which comes not just from Northern Ireland, but from all parts of the UK and from across all political parties," the North Antrim MP said.

"The government has a moral duty to support those citizens who have suffered so much and must finally take action.”

Gaddafi's supply of several shipments of semtex explosives to the Provisional IRA in the mid-1980s led to a deadly campaign of bombings.

They included the Enniskillen Remembrance Day bomb in 1987 which killed 12, and the Harrods department store blast of 1983 in which three police officers and three civilians died.

Two shopkeepers were also killed instantly during the London Docklands blast in 1996.

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