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Representing Victims of Terrorism in South Armagh
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16/11/04
Concern for Safety of Witnesses

Today representatives from FAIR contacted the Irish government to find out about the status of the forthcoming inquiry into the murders of Breen and Buchanan. Once again the Irish government have delayed the start date for the inquiry for some unknown reason and have said that they do not know at what point in the future the inquiry might begin.

Several months ago FAIR Director William Frazer along with DUP MP Jeffrey Donaldson met Irish Justice Minister Michael McDowell. At that meeting we were certainly left with the clear impression that the inquiry would be moving ahead quickly. We are now extremely worried about one of the main contributing witnesses to any inquiry, Kevin Fulton, who gave a statement regarding his personal safety in the context of the inquiry to Judge Cory. William Frazer met Judge Cory along with Kevin Fulton, and it is the firm opinion of this organisation that Fulton's evidence is crucial to the success and depth of any inquiry, given that there is also other facts and evidence to go along with and corroborate his testimony. It was during our research that we found Fulton was in a position to answer a lot of questions not only relating to Breen and Buchanan but also to other events and atrocities that took place in south Armagh.

It is essential that this inquiry moves ahead as quickly as possible for the safety of the witness and other people involved. If not we want to know why? If anything happens to any of the witnesses involved in these inquiries especially the Breen and Buchanan murders we will be holding the government responsible for not providing adequate security measures.

Bertie Ahern has been lambasting the British government about the Pat Finucane and Rosemary Nelson cases - about which a decision has been made regarding commencement. Where is the justification now the British government have made their announcement, and yet the Irish Justice Department cannot even give an indication when the case will pass through the Dail. Maybe Bertie should crow in his own yard before he does it in someone elses, and start practising what he preaches. FAIR hopes that this will open the door to the truth about torture and mass murder that took place in south Armagh while the Irish government stood by.

 



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