Adams repeats call for inquiry into Pat Finucane murder

SF leader says there is ‘onus’ on Irish government to ‘go beyond’ making ‘polite requests’

Geraldine Finucane (right), the widow of murdered Belfast solicitor Pat Finucane, arrives for a media conference with her children Katherine (2nd right), Michael (2nd left) and John (centre) in central London in December 2012. Photograph: Andrew Winning/Reuters

Geraldine Finucane (right), the widow of murdered Belfast solicitor Pat Finucane, arrives for a media conference with her children Katherine (2nd right), Michael (2nd left) and John (centre) in central London in December 2012. Photograph: Andrew Winning/Reuters

 

Sinn Féin president Gerry Adams has called on the Government to place pressure on the British government to initiate an independent inquiry into the murder of Belfast solicitor Pat Finucane 26 years ago.

The circumstances surrounding Mr Finucane’s murder raised suspicions of British collusion with the UDA gang that shot him fourteen times in front of his family on January 12th, 1989.

His murder came just weeks after British home office junior minister Douglas Hogg told Westminster MPs that certain solicitors in Northern Ireland are “unduly sympathetic” to terrorist organisations.

A number of investigations into collusion between loyalist paramilitaries and the RUC were held by Metropolitan Police Commissioner, Sir John Stevens, though much of his findings were kept secret.

In a statement released on Thursday to coincide with this year’s 26th anniversary of the solicitor’s murder, Mr Adams accused the British of having refused to implement the Weston Park agreement where it was agreed that both governments would appoint a judge of international standing to investigate allegations of collusion in a number of murders, including the murder of Mr Finucane.

“This is a repudiation of an international agreement between the British and Irish governments. Collusion was a matter of institutional and administrative practise by successive British governments. David Cameron has admitted there was collusion in Pat Finucane’s murder and apologised to the family,” he said.

A 2012 British government review of the murder judged that Mr Finucane might still be alive but for the actions of British state agencies. British prime minister David Cameron subsequently apologised to the Finucane family but ruled out establishing an independent public inquiry.

Mr Adams paid tribute to the Finucane family and said their suffering was compounded by the refusal to hold an inquiry.

“Their trauma and stress has been made all the greater because of the intransigence of the British government and its refusal to honour its commitment at Weston Park to hold a public enquiry.

“There is an onus on the Irish government to go beyond polite requests to David Cameron that are brushed aside and ignored by the British prime minister. When I raised this issue with the British prime minister during the Stormont House talks the Taoiseach never said a word.

“The government needs to put in place a vigorous political and diplomatic strategy to raise this case with our international friends in the USA and Europe at every opportunity.”

An international public inquiry was recommended by retired Canadian judge Peter Cory who reviewed the case in 2004 and there have been numerous calls for an investigation, including by Amnesty International and UN special investigator Param Cumaraswamy.

The anniversary of Mr Finucane’s murder has been marked each year with calls for such an inquiry.