Former British soldier to be charged — Bloody Sunday killings

Relatives and supporters of the victims of the 1972 Bloody Sunday killings hold images of those who died

A former British soldier will be charged in the slayings of two civil rights protesters 47 years ago on Bloody Sunday, one of the deadliest days of the decades-long conflict in Northern Ireland.

The marchers had been protesting Britain's detention of suspected Irish nationalists in the majority Catholic area of the Bogside in Derry on what became known as "Bloody Sunday", January 30, 1972.

"In these circumstances, the evidential test for prosecution is not met", Herron said.

Before a prosecutor's service briefing at a Londonderry hotel, the families marched from the Bogside and sang civil rights anthem 'We Shall Overcome.

But they now face a separate, lengthy.

Describing the impact of his brother's killing over those years, he said: "The toll, when you have a relative that has been shot dead by the British Army and you have been told for years that he could have possibly been a gunman, that he got what he deserved, the feeling that leaves in a family and the problems it created afterwards were too enormous to mention".

The announcement yesterday that murder charges are to be brought against a former member of the Parachute Regiment over his involvement in Derry's Bloody Sunday was a hugely significant moment which also demonstrated the massive complexity of the questions at the heart of the legacy debate.

"We are disappointed that not all of those responsible are to face trial".

But he added that they will look at the decisions not to prosecute the others and, if they do not stand up to scrutiny, seek to challenge them.

Soldiers take cover behind their sandbagged armoured cars in Londonderry, Northern Ireland on January 30, 1972. One former soldier has since died.

Conservative MP and former British Army officer Johnny Mercer tweeted it was "ironic that Dennis is back in court today", adding it was "a genuine disgrace and stain on this Nation that this process continues".

Bloody Sunday British paratrooper charged with two murders over massacre | Daily Star
Only One Former British Soldier Will Face Trial For Opening Fire On Bloody Sunday

"When I speak of a chasm between those who serve and their political masters in this country, I mean this", he tweeted.

Gavin Williamson, the United Kingdom's minister of defense, said the government will offer full legal support to Soldier F, including paying his legal costs and providing welfare support.

"If it is in the public interest to suspend prosecutions and release terrorists early from prison, it can not be in the public interest after almost half a century to prosecute these people", Richard Benyon, a ruling party MP and former British army officer, told The Times.

On the same day as the funerals were held for 11 of the Bloody Sunday victims, the British Embassy in Dublin was burned to the ground by an angry crowd.

They killed 13 Catholics and wounded 14 others, one of whom later died.

But Mr Kelly heavily criticised Williamson's for his support for measures to potentially protect veterans from historic prosecutions, calling on the authorities to investigate whether his past remarks, and similar comments by other politicians, "broke the law".

Bloody Sunday helped galvanise support for the Provisional IRA early in the Troubles.

John Kelly, whose brother Michael was killed in 1972, said Thursday the decision to prosecute just one former soldier was a "terrible disappointment" for the victims' families.

A fresh investigation was eventually ordered by then-prime minister Tony Blair in 1998.

The North's Public Prosecution Service has been looking at the case of 18 soldiers - one of whom has since died.

More news: Suspected white supremacist charged with murder after New Zealand mosque shootings

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