Below is a reply by the Foreign Affairs Minister to my most recent Parliamentary Question in relation to the requests of Dáil Éireann to the British Government concerning the need for a comprehensive investigation into the Dublin and Monaghan bombings in 1974.
For Written Answer on : 29/01/2019
Question Number(s): 137 Question Reference(s): 4184/19
Department: Foreign Affairs and Trade
Asked by: Brendan Smith T.D.
To ask the Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade the outcome of recent discussions he has had with the Foreign Secretary of State for Foreign and Common Wealth Affairs of the United Kingdom and with the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland in relation to the need for the UK Government to respond positively to the unanimous requests of Dáil Éireann regarding the Dublin and Monaghan bombings of 1974; and if he will make a statement on the matter.
The implementation of the All-Party Dáil motions relating to the Dublin and Monaghan bombings is a priority for the Government, as highlighted in the Programme for a Partnership Government. The All-Party motion on the 1974 Dublin Monaghan bombings adopted by the Dáil on 25 May 2016 has, like those adopted in 2008 and 2011, been conveyed to the British Government.
These motions call on the British Government to allow access by an independent, international judicial figure to all original documents relating to the Dublin and Monaghan bombings, as well as the Dublin bombings of 1972 and 1973, the bombing of Kay’s Tavern in Dundalk and the murder of Seamus Ludlow.
The Government is committed to actively pursuing the implementation of these motions, and has consistently raised the issue with the British Government. I am engaged with the British Government on an ongoing basis on this issue, as are officials from my Department.
I met with Justice for the Forgotten in April last year to hear their views and update them on the Government’s continuing engagement on legacy issues, including with the British Government on the Dáil motions. In addition, officials from my Department and the Department of Justice and Equality met with Justice for the Forgotten in July to hear their views on the implementation of the legacy framework provided for under the Stormont House Agreement.
My Department also facilitated an engagement in Dublin on 29 August last for the Northern Ireland Commissioner for Victims and Survivors, Judith Thompson, to hear the views of victims and survivors in this jurisdiction, including the families affected by the Dublin and Monaghan bombings and other attacks.
In relation to the Dáil motions, I have consistently underlined to the British Government that the Dáil motions represent the consensus political view in Ireland that an independent, international judicial review of all the relevant documents is required to establish the full facts of the Dublin and Monaghan atrocities. I have also underlined that the absence of a response from the British Government is of deep concern to the Government and indeed this House, and I have emphasised the urgent need for such a response.
The Government will continue to engage with the British Government on this request, and pursue all possible avenues to achieve progress on this issue, consistent with the request made by this House.