31 May 2006

Dublin/Monaghan bombings inquiry extended


30/05/2006 - 19:37:17

A Government inquiry into the 1974 Dublin and Monaghan bombings, which was due to report this month, has been granted an extension until July 31.

The Commission of Investigation led by barrister Patrick MacEntee needs more time to examine information provided by an unknown individual it met outside the state a week ago.

“The Commission is satisfied that this person is the person whom it had been seeking in relation to the outstanding and unresolved area of its terms of reference,” Mr MacEntee said in an interim report published tonight.

The senior counsel said the May 31 deadline was no longer adequate and the Cabinet today agreed to his request to revise the timeframe to July 31.

Survivors and relatives of the atrocities, which killed 33, marked the 32nd anniversary in Dublin last week.

The inquiry, which began a year ago, has previously asked the Government for extra time to complete its deliberations.

It had believed in late April that it had completed its investigations as well as it could until it was presented with new information by the Justice for the Forgotten group representing victims.

“This information, when taken with the information already available to the Commission, was sufficient to warrant one final attempt to further the investigation of this particular aspect of the terms of reference,” Mr MacEntee said.

The Commission said it met this person outside the state on May 23.

A woman who was nine months pregnant was among the victims when loyalist paramilitaries detonated three cars bombs in Dublin and one in Monaghan on May 17, 1974.

Speculation has since continued that British security forces were involved in assisting the terrorists carry out the atrocity.

No-one has ever been brought to justice and the British government has refused to hand over some files for reasons of national security.

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