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28 March 2002 Edition

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UN special rapporteur backs collusion families

United Nations special rapporteur Param Cumaraswamy has criticised plans by the British government to appoint an international judge to investigate the killings of the solicitors Pat Finucane and Rosemary Nelson.

The British appointed judge will look into the killings of Pat Finucane and Rosemary Nelson to decide whether there should be a public inquiry. But after years of investigations, this would only result in further delays.

In a report to be presented to the Human Rights Commission in Geneva next month, Param Cumaraswamy will reiterate his earlier calls for a public judicial inquiry into the assassinations of the two well known solicitors.

Speaking to An Phoblacht, Martin Finucane said: "I am very pleased that the United Nations has publicly expressed itself in such an unclouded and outspoken way. The United Nations Human rights Commission has made it abundantly clear to the British government that the appointment of a international judge to examine the murder of Pat is not the proper mechanism and does not have any merit."

Commenting on the report, Sinn Féin President Gerry Adams said "with the involvement of the British security services, Brian Nelson and the RUC in this killing, I fully agree with the special rapporteur's report calling for a precise and transparent independent judicial inquiry".

In further a development into the killing of Pat Finucane, well known UDA chief William 'Mo' Courtney from the Glencairn estate in North Belfast, has been arrested and is being questioned about his involvement in this killing. He has being questioned before about this killing and was released without charge.

Meanwhile, on the fifth anniversary of the killing of Robert hamill, the Troops Out Movement has backed calls for an open inquiry into his killing and those of Pat Finucane and Rosemary Nelson.

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