Relatives for Justice reacts to NIO amendments to the Legacy and Reconciliation Bill of Shame

June 8th 2023

NIO amendments to the Legacy and Reconciliation Bill of Shame only makes the situation worse.

The rights of victims and survivors will be permanently shut down, especially those engaged in inquests.

The Bill incentivizes state tactics to delay the progress of inquests.

At its very core this Bill removes all rights and access to justice for victims.

It will amnesty egregious crimes of torture and murder.

It is completely perpetrator-centred.

It is anti-victim, anti-human rights and anti-rule of law. This will have a detrimental and  traumatic impact on tens of thousands of victims and survivors.

It is an amalgamation of every underhanded and deceitful tactic used by the NIO, MoD, PSNI and Security Service/MI5 against families and those harmed, within the courts over the past two decades. It takes away the agency provided by the Good Friday Agreement to assert their rights and seek justice.

The phrases around this Bill, by those driving it, such as reconciliation and human rights compliance are completely disingenuous.

This Bill is irreformable and must be scrapped.

It has absolutely no support from those whom it purports to assist.

Cynically released after the Committee of Ministers to the Council of Europe had critically reported on the UK’s legal obligations to victims and survivors, and after Prime Minister Rishi Sunak had boarded his plane home from Washington, the British Government timed the release of these amendments to once again evade scrutiny.

This Bill will principally support British state interests. At worst it will be weaponized by the NIO in an attempt to reassert the British state’s narrative of the conflict. This is extremely dangerous.

RFJ offices are available to victims and survivors with questions about the meaning of this legislation and these amendments. Please contact us on 028 90627171 or email or via our social media