Sunday relative fears violence over protests

Linda and Kate Nash with supporters pictured in the Guildhall yesterday.  DER1119GS-010
Linda and Kate Nash with supporters pictured in the Guildhall yesterday. DER1119GS-010

The sister of a man who was killed on Bloody Sunday has said she fears there will be violence over planned rallies in support of Soldier F.

Kate Nash, whose 19-year-old brother William was killed and father Alex injured on January 30, 1972, said there is a lot of ‘hurt’ about the planned protests against the prosecution of the former paratrooper.

The Public Prosecution Service announced last month that Soldier F is to be charged with the murder of James Wray and William McKinney and the attempted murders of Joseph Friel, Michael Quinn, Joe Mahon and Patrick O’Donnell.

Veterans have reacted angrily to this decision.

Thousands of bikers are expected to take part in a protest in London next week in a ‘Rolling Thunder’ ride and are due to travel from across the UK.

Organiser Harry Wragg said: “Our ride is not directed at the victims, it is directed at the British Government.

“Our argument is with the Government, not the victims of Bloody Sunday or any other event.”

A further protest is to take place in Belfast at the end of the month.

Ms Nash said the plans are ‘terrible’.

“There is so much hatred at the minute. It’s all over social media and there are paratrooper flags and banners going up everywhere. People are very, very hurt by it and they are getting angry. I really do fear violence and that is the last thing we would want.”

Ms Nash said she believes the protests are an attempt to interfere with the course of justice.

“I believe the reason for these protests is to make sure Soldier F is tried outside Northern Ireland. It is a deliberate act to try to interfere in due process.”

She added that it appeared to be another attempt to interfere with what the families have achieved during their long campaign for justice.

Ms Nash confirmed that her family are to challenge the decision by the PPS to charge just one soldier.