Sir Keir Starmer warned over plan to repeal draft laws offering immunity for Troubles crimes

Back down on Troubles Bill: Sir Keir Starmer warned over plan to repeal draft laws offering immunity for crimes in Northern Ireland

  • Law would exempt accused of Troubles offence punishment if they cooperate  
  • Speaking in Belfast yesterday, Starmer claimed it was ‘wrong in principle’
  • It would also halt future civil cases and inquests linked to killings during conflict

Labour was warned last night that its plan to repeal draft laws offering immunity from prosecution for Troubles crimes in Northern Ireland would be a ‘retrograde step’.

The legislation would exempt from prosecution those accused of Troubles offences as long as they cooperate with a new truth recovery body.

It would also halt future civil cases and inquests linked to killings during the conflict.

But speaking in Belfast yesterday, Sir Keir Starmer claimed the legislation was ‘wrong in principle’ and has ‘no support’ from victims or Northern Ireland’s political parties.

Speaking yesterday at Queen's University in Belfast on Brexit's NI Protocol, Sir Keir Starmer claimed the legislation was ‘wrong in principle’ and has ‘no support’ from victims or Northern Ireland’s political parties

Speaking yesterday at Queen’s University in Belfast on Brexit’s NI Protocol, Sir Keir Starmer claimed the legislation was ‘wrong in principle’ and has ‘no support’ from victims or Northern Ireland’s political parties

The proposed law has been tabled amid calls from backbench Tory MPs for an end to fresh prosecutions. 

Northern Ireland Secretary Chris Heaton-Harris branded Sir Keir’s call to repeal the Bill as ‘a retrograde step that would prolong the wait for answers and accountability that many families have been after for decades’.

‘We have announced a number of proposed changes which seek to address key concerns that have been raised by many stakeholders, including victims and survivors,’ he said.

‘This bill will remain challenging for many, but the complex issue of legacy must be tackled in Northern Ireland. I would encourage the Opposition to work with us, so together we can help Northern Ireland move forward.’

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