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Public Inquiries

Dáil Éireann Debate, Tuesday - 3 November 2020

Tuesday, 3 November 2020

Questions (653)

Patricia Ryan

Question:

653. Deputy Patricia Ryan asked the Minister for Foreign Affairs if he will ask the British Government to establish a public enquiry into the death of a person (details supplied). [33824/20]

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Written answers (Question to Foreign)

Ireland’s firm view remains that a satisfactory outcome to the Finucane case can only be achieved through a public inquiry, as was provided for under the Weston Park Agreement reached by the UK and Irish Governments in 2001. I reaffirmed that position directly to the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland once again at our last meeting on 8 October in Hillsborough. The Secretary of State for Northern Ireland has committed to take a decision on whether to order a public inquiry into the murder of Pat Finucane by the end of November. The Government will continue to engage with the UK Government on this issue at this critical juncture, and I am due to meet remotely with the Finucane family tomorrow to discuss their case and to reaffirm the Government’s support.

It is important to note that the Council of Europe’s Committee of Ministers in September expressed their deep concern that a decision has still not been made by UK authorities on how to respond to the 2019 UK Supreme Court judgment with respect to the case of Pat Finucane. The next meeting of the Committee is to take place in December, and the UK Government’s decision is awaited by the Committee.

The Finucane family, like so many other families, have waited for far too long, and have had to campaign determinedly for decades in their pursuit of truth and justice. This underlines the clear need for the implementation of the framework agreed in Stormont House in 2014 to address the legacy of the past comprehensively and fairly, and in a way that responds to the needs of all victims and survivors, and indeed society as a whole.

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