7/09/2016 – Ref Tuesday’s SEFF meeting with the DOJ Minister

Kenny Donaldson, Director of Services at SEFF stated: “We had a robust meeting with the Justice Minister today where we impressed the need for a review of Sentencing Guidelines particularly in light of recent coverage concerning non-PROVO Republicans Damien McLaughlin and Dee Fennell and raising again the way in which Seamus Kearney was able to benefit from regular weekend release and the impact this has upon Constable Proctor’s family. We asserted that the Justice system has learnt nothing”.

“We also asserted the need for DOJ N.I and the Secretary of State/UK Government to adopt a policy of supporting and standing up for UK citizens in cases of alleged wrongdoing by the RoI State and/or security forces operating to that State. The ‘neutral’ policy currently operates is not reciprocated by Dublin ie ‘Hooded Men’ case, Dublin-Monaghan, Ballymurphy. Loughin Island, Bloody Sunday etc”.

“We made it clear that we do not deny any victim/survivor the right to pursue justice, truth and accountability for the circumstances visited upon them but that we expect equality for our constituency of victims and survivors”.

“We also advised the Minister that Kingsmils was the litmus test for innocent victims and survivors of terrorism in how the RoI might deal with legacy matters (pre introduction of HIU) That State has been found seriously wanting. At this point SEFF has limited confidence that the RoI State will engage constructively and provide ‘full disclosure.’

“The Minister committed to examining our concerns and issues and to continuing a dialogue going forward”.