Relatives of those shot dead on Bloody Sunday have rubbished claims that they struck a “deal” not to campaign for the prosecution of soldiers in return for an apology from the British government.
The “deal” assertion was made by Foyle MLA and former Bloody Sunday Trust chairman, Eamonn McCann, who alleged that, in exchange for an apology from the British and an assertion that all of the dead and wounded were innocent, there would be no more Bloody Sunday marches or efforts to push for prosecutions.
The “stitch-up,” he added, only unravelled because some family members weren’t prepared to accept the “deal” and opted, instead, to keep on marching until the original demands of the campaign - including prosecutions - were met.
Now, a number of relatives have issued a statement in which they angrily refute the “deal” claims, branding them “fanciful,” “highly misleading” and “deeply offensive.”
Tony Doherty, John Kelly, Gerry Duddy and Jean Hegarty, who all lost relatives in the 1972 massacre, said Mr McCann “knows full well” there was no such deal or any discussion of a deal.
“The Bloody Sunday march was never discussed with the NIO or Downing Street.
“To suggest otherwise is fanciful.
“There was no discussion of the issue of prosecutions. How could there be? None of us, Mr. McCann included, knew at that time what was in the Saville Report.”