For Written Answer on : 19/05/2021
Question Number(s): 132 Question Reference(s): 27023/21
Department: Foreign Affairs
Asked by: Brendan Smith T.D.
To ask the Minister for Foreign Affairs the outcome of the most recent discussions he has had with the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland and the UK Foreign Secretary in relation to the need to have comprehensive investigations into the Dublin and Monaghan bombings of May 1974 as requested in motions passed unanimously in Dáil Éireann; and if he will make a statement on the matter.
This week saw the 47th anniversary of the Dublin and Monaghan bombings, in which thirty-three persons were killed and hundreds seriously injured, attacks which saw the largest loss of life on a single day in the Troubles. My thoughts are with the victims, survivors and the families of all those who were lost that day, as they remember their loved ones.
The Government will continue to seek the full truth of these appalling attacks, and some measure of closure for those affected, in accordance with the three Motions passed unanimously by Dáil Éireann.
The All-Party motion on the 1974 Dublin Monaghan bombings that was adopted by the Dáil on 25 May 2016, like those adopted in 2008 and 2011, calls 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 All-Party Dáil motions. We have consistently raised the issue with the British Government, including at the British-Irish Inter-Governmental Conference. The Government will continue to engage with the British Government on this request, at senior political level and in official level engagement by my Department, to pursue all possible avenues to achieve progress on this issue until a resolution is found.
In this regard, the Government has welcomed the work of former Chief Constable Jon Boutcher, who is heading an Independent Police Team to conduct an analytical report on collusion in what has become known as the Glenanne Gang series of cases. This is very relevant to a number of cases including the Dublin and Monaghan bombings. The Government will be supportive of facilitating this investigation, subject to the requirements of the law, as we have other investigative processes in Northern Ireland.
The Government will also continue to maintain a close and cooperative relationship with Justice for the Forgotten, as we work to seek the full facts of the appalling events of 25 May 1974 and of other attacks in this jurisdiction during the Troubles.