Bloody Sunday soldier faces murder charges

Leroy Wright
March 15, 2019

"A printer at the Derry Journal newspaper, the 27-year-old was the oldest of ten and was engaged to be married".

Ms O'Neill, who hugged and shook hands with some of the relatives, said: 'It's a huge day for the families and I think there is a lot of expectation.

A 5,000-page report released in 2010 by Lord Saville found those killed on Bloody Sunday posed no threat, were unarmed, and that soldiers had fired the first shot.

Former soldiers who killed thirteen men on Bloody Sunday will learn today if they're to be charged with murder.

The sole prosecution is seen as a "terrible disappointment" by some of the families of the 13 people killed.

"All four soldiers insisted they had shot at people carrying bombs or firearms - claims rejected by Saville".

He was shot as he ran for cover.

Lord Saville concluded there was "no possible justification" for his death.

Victims carried out of the fire line during Bloody Sunday.

However, the PPS said 16 other former soldiers and two suspected ex-members of the Official IRA will not face prosecution.

Director of Public Prosecutions for Northern Ireland, Stephen Herron said he was conscious relatives faced an "extremely hard day".

Relatives of the Bloody Sunday families were visibly upset after learning of the prosecution decisions at a city centre hotel on Thursday morning.

The more credible Saville inquiry didn't begin until 1998.

Mr Mercer also tweeted that the Bloody Sunday charges brought against Soldier F were the result of "an abject failure to govern and legislate, on our watch as a Conservative administration".

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The NZ Herald reported that shots were fired at a mosque close to Hagley Park in the city's central area. Armed police have been deployed after receiving reports of shots fired in the city center at 1:40 p.m.

The Bloody Sunday Memorial in Derry's Bogside, 06-04-2019.

They were greeted with applause as they walked to the Guildhall, in Derry, to meet the media.

"So many of these families, I can't tell you how disappointed we are", she said.

The decision to prosecute came a week after Britain's minister for Northern Ireland, Karen Bradley, was forced to apologise for saying that killings by British soldiers and police were "not crimes".

The victims' families, as well as the British, Irish and U.S. governments, saw the findings as a step toward healing one of the biggest wounds left by the four-decade conflict in Northern Ireland that left 3700 people dead.

The official British response was to praise and promise to protect the soldier.

"The decision to prosecute just one ex-soldier does not change the fact that Bloody Sunday was a massacre of innocents", Sinn Fein's Northern Ireland leader Michelle O'Neill said in a statement. "But whatever can be done for our loved ones, we will do it. As this is now an ongoing legal matter, it would be inappropriate to comment further".

The British government said it would provide full legal support to the soldier who will face prosecution.

An investigation by the Northern Ireland Public Prosecution Service said there was enough evidence to prosecute one solider.

"The welfare of our former service personnel is of the utmost importance", Defence Minister Gavin Williamson said in a statement. This includes funding all his legal costs and providing welfare support.

Mr Williamson said the United Kingdom Government would look at "new safeguards" to ensure defence force personnel "are not unfairly treated".

Over time, though, the victims' families got organized, campaigned for justice and eventually, more than 25 years after the killings, when a peace deal was signed in Northern Ireland, the British government committed to a full-scale inquiry.

The UK Ministry of Defence has said its serving and former personnel can not live in constant fear of prosecution.

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