a The Republic of Ireland’s foreign minister, Simon Coveney, said he hoped to raise the issue with British Prime Minister Boris Johnson to find a negotiated solution between all parties, including the independent Northern Ireland government, who also oppose this proposal.
Northern Ireland Minister Brandon Lewis announced today in the British Parliament the measure, described by critics as an “amnesty”, which would apply in principle to both British armed forces and Unionist (Protestant) and Republican (Catholic) paramilitaries accused of crimes prior to the 1998 peace accords.
For 30 years, the conflict in Northern Ireland pitted Catholic republicans, in favor of the reunification of Ireland, against Protestant “unionists”, in favor of keeping the province under the British Crown.
Violent clashes and bombings killed about 3,500 people.
Coveney argued that dialogue on the matter with London should be governed by the principles of the so-called 2014 Stormont Agreement, in which all parts of Northern Ireland, the Republic of Ireland and the United Kingdom pledged to investigate unsolved crimes by the British government. conflict.
Earlier, Irish Prime Minister Michael Martin warned that any “unilateral” action by Johnson would be a “betrayal of trust” and a “betrayal of the victims”.
Lewis’ announcement today comes three weeks after the British and Irish governments agreed to start a “short and focused” round of talks with Northern Ireland’s political parties and victims of the conflict over the issue of inheritance.
So far, the two parties have held only one meeting since then, while the second meeting scheduled for this morning has been cancelled.
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