Emmett McConomy said that Brandon Lewis, the new Northern Ireland secretary, should not underestimate the strength of feelings among the families, whose loved ones were killed by British troops during the troubles. Mr. McConomy’s 11-year-old brother, Stephen, was killed 38 years ago after being shot in the back of the neck with a plastic bullet. He said to The Guardian: “We are asking to be heard, because we are not going away.
“The families of the victims in Northern Ireland want to see justice and ask for the truth to surface.”
According to McConomy, his brother was playing on a Derry street when he was hit by a soldier from a passing Saracen armored car.
Stephen died three days later from a serious head injury, after which an investigation by the military police was conducted.
The unidentified soldier claimed to have fired accidentally and an investigation the following year returned an open verdict.
The McConomy family have since campaigned for a new investigation, claiming that Stephen had been killed illegally.
The Troubles saw over 3,000 people killed, with around 900 cases involving the lives of 1,200 people still unresolved.
Most involve deaths attributed to republican or loyalist paramilitaries, but about 29% involve security personnel, including up to 200 soldiers.
On Thursday, Prime Minister Boris Johnson said he had fired Northern Ireland secretary Julian Smith because he agreed to sanction an investigation into alleged crimes committed by British soldiers during trouble to restore power sharing to Stormont.
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However, the allies of the former Northern Ireland secretary rejected these allegations.
They insisted that Mr. Smith had ensured that the Prime Minister was kept fully informed of the details of the Stormont agreement.
A colleague of Mr. Smith stressed that the MP from Skipton and Ripon had returned from Belfast on January 6 to personally inform the Prime Minister.
The source also claimed that the reminders had been sent back and forth between the Northern Ireland secretary’s team and number 10, so it was “absolute c ** p” to suggest that Mr. Johnson had been blinded.
Johnson determined to protect British soldiers from “vexatious” lawsuits
A passage in the Queen’s Speech in December promised that the government would “make proposals to address vexatious claims that undermine our armed forces and will continue to seek better ways of dealing with legacy issues that provide better results for victims and survivors.”
Ahead of the speech, The Sun said that this means that “Boris Johnson will promise to change the law to end a series of harassment claims against former army soldiers on active duty during the province’s troubles.”
According to the proposals, the British government will seek to modify the human rights law in the United Kingdom so that it no longer applies to accidents, including deaths during problems, which occurred before the law was enacted in 2000.
SDLP leader Colum Eastwood said that any attempt to introduce an amnesty for British soldiers would be resisted in the House of Commons.