More will emerge on collusion – NI priest

Fr Raymond Murray welcomes latest revelations

A campaigning priest in Northern Ireland has said further revelations of state collusion with terror groups will emerge following last week’s launch of a detailed account of systemic collusion there.

Fr Raymond Murray, who examined allegations of collusion as far back as the 1970s, welcomed the publication of Lethal Allies, by Anne Cadwallader of the Pat Finucane Centre and said the book would encourage others to examine the issue.

Speaking to The Irish Catholic this week, Fr Murray said “this tremendous book will be welcomed by those who want the truth [and] more important, it will encourage others to dig deeper and more and more will come out”.

Fr Murray, together with the late Fr Denis Faul, attempted to get to the truth of state collusion in the so-called ‘Triangle of Death’, geographically located between Armagh, Portadown, and Dungannon, and long believed that only collusion could account for the ability of loyalist terrorists to act with impunity in carrying out more than 120 murders.

“For such a confined area, the investigation was very poor,” Fr Murray said of the police response to the killing spree. “It was so clear that state forces knew their own were involved.”

Now with the Cadwallader book, based on 15 years of research, Fr Murray believes “that which was hidden is finally coming out”.

Fr Murray added that he does not accept that the collusion now exposed was confined merely to the police and military, stating that “this is also a matter for governments”.

Given the scale of killings and poor investigation results, he pointed out “people in high authority must have known of the collusion. They are to blame also”. Equally, he was critical of the Irish Government, expressing his disappointment that it “did not do more at the time”.

Welcoming the emergence of truth after so long, Fr Murray said people had waited 40 years for it, and ultimately, it would be good for Northern Ireland.

“Truth helps towards peace,” he said.