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Relatives take fight for justice to No.10

By Ciara Quinn

FAMILIES fighting for justice and truth travelled to Downing Street yesterday (Wednesday) as part of the ‘In Their Footsteps’ campaign.

The Ballymurphy Massacre families and the McGurk’s bar families were among those who went to the English capital to raise awareness of their battles to bring to account those responsible for the death of their loved ones.

A ‘Sea of Shoes’ was placed on the footpath opposite the London home of British Prime Minister David Cameron. The shoes are designed to bring home in a very poignant and personal way the extent of the loss suffered by the families.

Ballymurphy Massacre Families spokesperson John Teggart said part of the reason why the group travelled across the water to Downing Street “was to show the British government and British people that we have rights too”.

“The British government needs to accept responsibility for their actions and implement mechanisms for dealing with the past,” he said.

Speaking on behalf of the McGurk’s bar families, Robert McClenaghan told the Andersonstown News that the campaign held added significance for all those involved as it was taking place on International Human Rights Day.

“For the last 43 years the McGurk’s bar families have been on a long journey to try and find truth, justice and acknowledgement. Along the way we have met hundreds of other bereaved families who are also on a similar quest for closure. In a way the shoes symbolise that collective uphill journey carrying such a heavy burden of responsibility on our shoulders. We are asking people who see the 150 pairs of shoes laid out row upon row facing Downing Street, to stop and think what it must feel like to walk in our shoes.

“On International Human Rights Day we are bringing our shoes to London, the epicentre of the British establishment, in the hope that they will listen and hear our cries for justice and truth.”

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