Stardust relatives hold protest calling for reopening of inquest

Families of fire victims hold protest at Dublin Coroner’s Court

Relatives of the victims of the Stardust fire say calls for the reopening of inquests into the victims’ deaths had been ignored. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Relatives of the victims of the Stardust fire say calls for the reopening of inquests into the victims’ deaths had been ignored. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

 

Families of the victims of the Stardust fire held a protest at Dublin Coroner’s Court yesterday calling for the inquest into the 48 deaths be reopened.

Antoinette Keegan said the protest marked the burial of her two sisters 35 years previously. She said calls from families for the inquests to be reopened had been ignored.

“We have a cause of death but we have no verdict and I believe we are entitled to that,” Ms Keegan said. Her sisters Mary and Martina died in the fire. Some 48 young people died in the fire at the disco in Artane on Dublin’s north side on Valentine’s night 1981. The inquest into the deaths was heard in 1982.

“The cause of death given was shock secondary to extensive burns,” Ms Keegan said, adding that a new inquiry into the incident is required as “new evidence has come to light”.

Minister for Justice Frances Fitzgerald has met the Stardust Relatives’ and Victims Committee, a department spokesman said. “The matters raised at these meetings are the subject of ongoing correspondence between the committee and the department,” he said.