Informe anual 2013
El estado de los derechos humanos en el mundo

12 septiembre 2013

Northern Ireland: New report slams failure to deal with the past

Northern Ireland: New report slams failure to deal with the past
During ‘the troubles’ in Northern Ireland, more than 3,600 people were killed and more than 40,000 injured. In most cases, no one has ever been held responsible.

During ‘the troubles’ in Northern Ireland, more than 3,600 people were killed and more than 40,000 injured. In most cases, no one has ever been held responsible.

© Hulton Archive/Getty Images


There’s a cruel irony in the fact that Northern Ireland is held up as a success story when many victims' families actually consider their treatment a failure
Fuente: 
John Dalhuisen, Amnesty International's Europe and Central Asia Programme Director
It’s said they are waiting for us to die out. But the next generation will still keep asking questions about what happened. Look at me, it was my grandfather who was killed and I am still going to keep asking for the truth.
Fuente: 
James Miller, whose grandfather David Miller was among nine people killed in a suspected IRA bomb attack in Claudy in 1972

Victims of the conflict in Northern Ireland are being "disgracefully let down" by a flawed and fragmented approach to dealing with the past, Amnesty International said today as it published a new report.

Northern Ireland: Time to Deal with the Past blames the failure to deliver truth and justice on a lack of political will from both the UK government and Northern Ireland’s political parties.

Fifteen years on from the Belfast/Good Friday Agreement, and one week ahead of the start of major new talks, the 78-page report finds that victims and their families have been failed by successive attempts to investigate abuses.

A failure to deliver a comprehensive approach to dealing with the past has contributed to the societal division that is still rife in Northern Ireland, Amnesty found.

The report, launched today in Belfast, is published ahead of the start of all-party talks chaired by the former US envoy to Northern Ireland, Richard Haass, which are aimed at dealing with the past, and addressing other contentious issues such as parading and flags.

“Victims and relatives have been disgracefully let down by inadequate attempts to get to the truth about what happened in Northern Ireland," said John Dalhuisen, Amnesty International's Europe and Central Asia Programme Director.

“There’s a cruel irony in the fact that Northern Ireland is held up as a success story when many victims' families actually consider their treatment a failure.

“Over the last decade a patchwork of measures, including isolated investigations, have failed to establish the full truth about the violations and abuses of the past and left many victims waiting for justice.

“The UK government and all political parties in Northern Ireland need to grasp the nettle now and agree a new approach which is capable of dealing fully with the past.”

The report finds that although numerous disparate and isolated mechanisms exist to look at separate events, the inherent limitations and narrow mandates of each process has meant that they cannot – even collectively – provide the full truth about human rights violations and abuses committed by all sides during the three decades of political violence.

During "the troubles" in Northern Ireland, more than 3,600 people were killed and more than 40,000 injured. In most cases, no one has ever been held responsible.

Amnesty International's report shows that families have been failed by processes conducted by the Police Service of Northern Ireland’s Historical Enquiries Team, the Office of the Police Ombudsman and various coroners’ inquests; each of which had a narrow remit and often left families with more questions than answers.

James Miller, whose grandfather David Miller was among nine people killed in a suspected IRA bomb attack in Claudy in 1972, said:
“It’s said they are waiting for us to die out. But the next generation will still keep asking questions about what happened. Look at me, it was my grandfather who was killed and I am still going to keep asking for the truth.”

Peter Heathwood was shot and left paralysed in an attack on his home by suspected loyalist gunmen in September 1979. His father, Herbert Heathwood, died of a heart attack at the scene. Peter said:
“People say let’s forget about the past and move on, it was 30 years ago. That’s a load of bunkum. In Northern Ireland the past is the present. If we don’t deal with the past, I don’t want my grandchildren to have to suffer this again. As injured people, we are living scars in society and we need to have it recognised that we have suffered.”

Amnesty International is calling for a comprehensive mechanism to be set up to review the conflict as a whole, establish the truth about outstanding human rights violations and determine responsibility.

Any such mechanism must also examine abuses suffered by those seriously injured, and victims of torture and other ill-treatment, which have too often been excluded from existing processes, the organisation said.

Such a mechanism would be an important step towards ending impunity for human rights violations and abuses in Northern Ireland and could contribute towards ending societal division.

Tema

Conflictos armados 
Armed Groups 
Extrajudicial Executions And Other Unlawful Killings 
Impunity 
Law Enforcement 
Military, Security And Police Equipment 
Juicios y sistemas judiciales 

País

Irlanda 
Reino Unido 

Región

Europa y Asia Central 

@amnestyonline on twitter

Noticias

22 julio 2014

Mientras en Londres se reúnen hoy activistas para debatir sobre estrategias para abordar la mutilación genital femenina, comunidades de todo Sierra Leona adoptan un enfoque... Más »

04 septiembre 2014

Amnistía Internacional lleva muchos años investigando y documentando el uso de la tortura en México. A continuación, ofrecemos algunos datos alarmantes:

Más »
03 junio 2014

En la segunda de una serie de dos partes, dos de las personas cuyos nombres estaban entre los “más buscados” a causa de su papel en las protestas de 1989 en Tiananmen cuentan... Más »

11 julio 2014

Sasha, activista ucraniano de 19 años, fue secuestrado a punta de pistola por separatistas en Luhansk y golpeado una y otra vez durante 24 horas.

Más »
03 septiembre 2014

La decapitación del periodista estadounidense Steven Sotloff por militantes del Estado Islámico es el último de la serie de crímenes de guerra que están cometiendo los grupos... Más »