‘There must be justice for victims of Loughinisland massacre’ – Ritchie

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Saturday, June 16th, 2012
SDLP South Down MP Margaret Ritchie has spoken in advance of the 18th anniversary of the Loughinisland Atrocity. Speaking to Newry Times, she said: “Nationally and internationally, the anniversary of the Loughinisland Atrocity will be marked by many people throughout the world. However, our focus is at home on the families of all those who were killed or injured in the Loughinisland shooting.” “As we mark 18 years since the shooting we remember not only the absence of family and loved ones but also the absence of justice for the dead, the victims and their families. In the next few weeks the PSNI will publish the findings of their review into the Loughinisland murder inquiry, undertaken at the time by the then RUC. This review was one of the recommendations that came from the Ombudsman’s Report in 2011. It is my understanding that this review will result in the PSNI senior team recommending a number of actions to be taken forward by the PSNI, that will hopefully lead to the arrest and conviction of those responsible for the Loughinisland murders.” She continued, “The result of this review in the next few weeks will not bring about immediate answers and immediate convictions, but I hope will be a stage in the process of bringing those responsible to justice. I very much share the community’s frustration about the fact that 18 years later no one has been brought to book for the murder of these local men. The Police Ombudsman’s Report published 12 months ago pointed the way towards collusion in the murders but was inconclusive and simply deepened the level of frustration and distress felt by the families.” “18 years later we are at a stage where the PSNI are revisiting and actively investigating the atrocity, and have assured us that they are committed to arresting and convicting those responsible for the Loughinisland Murders. The Families and the Community need justice for the victims of the shooting. While it is long overdue it is my sincere hope that the investigation process the PSNI have now embarked upon will being answers and convictions.” Ritchie added, “I will continue to meet with those leading this inquiry and keep pushing for results from this investigation and the conviction of those responsible for the murders of six men in O’Tooles Bar on 18th June 1994.”
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