Eastwood welcomes Labor Party pledge to repeal ‘toxic’ Problem Legacy Bill

SDLP leader Colum Eastwood has welcomed Labor leader Keir Starmer’s pledge to repeal the UK government’s “toxic” Legacy Bill.

The bill, which introduces conditional amnesties, is expected to come into force before the summer.

It is opposed by all political parties in Northern Ireland, victims’ and survivors’ representatives and the Irish Government.

They all believe it would bar the path to justice and accountability for families who have stood up for their loved ones for decades.

However, the UK government still stands by the law and says it will not be withdrawn.

Mr Eastwood discussed the implications of the bill with Mr Starmer on Thursday at Parliament House.

The Foyle MP said the Conservative Legacy Bill was an “affront” to victims and survivors because it shields paramilitary and state killers from investigation while closing the avenue to justice for families who have campaigned for their loved ones for decades.

“It has no support in Northern Ireland, it is opposed by all political parties, victims and survivors and the Irish Government. We don’t agree with that and the Tories have no mandate here to enforce it,” added Mr Eastwood.

“Keir Starmer understands the importance of truth, justice and accountability to victims and survivors. He understands the burden and weight of the intergenerational trauma caused by the failure to adequately address the legacy of our past.

“And he understands the fundamental need of the people of Northern Ireland to consent to any process designed to address the past.

“I very much welcome Keir’s commitment that his government, as Prime Minister, will repeal this toxic legislation and return to upholding the human rights of victims and survivors. There is no other approach that enforces consent here.

“SDLP MPs will support Keir and the Labor Party in getting this bill repealed at the earliest opportunity.”

https://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/news/northern-ireland/eastwood-welcomes-labour-commitment-to-repeal-toxic-troubles-legacy-bill-42283955.html Eastwood welcomes Labor Party pledge to repeal ‘toxic’ Problem Legacy Bill

Linh

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