British Government Offers Compensation to ‘Bloody Sunday’ Families

Posted September 22nd, 2011 at 8:55 am (UTC-5)
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Britain's government says it will compensate the families of protestors killed and wounded during the “Bloody Sunday” massacre of 1972 in Northern Ireland.

British soldiers opened fire on Catholic protestors in Londonderry during an unauthorized demonstration against Britain's detention without trial of Irish Republican Army suspects. Thirteen people were killed and 14 others wounded during the incident, which became one of the pivotal events in the nearly 30 years of violence known as “The Troubles.”

The Ministry of Defense admitted that members of the armed forces acted wrongly, and acknowledged the pain felt by their families. The ministry said the government was “deeply sorry” and had written to the lawyers of the families about making compensation payments where there is a legal liability to do so.

Prime Minister David Cameron also apologized when he presented the findings of an exhaustive report to parliament in June last year, calling the shootings “unjustified and unjustifiable.”

Some families of victims say they are not interested in financial compensation, but want to see the soldiers who opened fire face criminal prosecution. Linda Nash, whose 19-year-old brother William was killed on Bloody Sunday, called the offer of compensation “repulsive” and “offensive.”