Priest praises Ballymurphy Massacre families at memorial

Priest praises Ballymurphy Massacre families at memorial

Those guilty of the shooting of 10 innocent people in Ballymurphy showed “sneering contempt” and “lack of repentance” according to the parish priest at a memorial service.

Relatives and friends of the victims held a candlelit vigil in memory of their loved ones who were killed in West Belfast in 1971.

The Ballymurphy shootings occurred as the British army attempted to arrest IRA suspects after the Stormont administration introduced internment, imprisonment without trial.

At the Mass which was held on the first Sunday of Advent, Fr Paddy McCaffrerty told the victims’ families that they have “stood firm” and patient while telling the truth.

“What is required now, as a matter of justice, is that their innocence be declared to the whole world; and the true nature, of what was perpetrated here in our parish by the Parachute Regiment, be unequivocally accepted, by the British Government, as an unjustified and unjustifiable murderous outrage,” he said.

After telling the truth for 47 years, he said of the families, their desire is for their “innocent loved ones be vindicated as a matter justice and truth”.

The inquest into the killings began on November 12 in Laganside Court.

This comes as an anonymous soldier, referred to as M3, this week gave evidence from behind a screen apologising to the family of one of the victims, Eddie Doherty (31).

The ex-Royal Engineer said: “I can’t even begin to think how it affected them, horrendous.”

“I just can’t believe, I just can’t understand how…for a mad 30 seconds to last a legacy like this.”