20 January 2005 Edition

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Anger at jailing of Derry republican

Sinn Féin MLA Raymond McCartney

Sinn Féin MLA Raymond McCartney

Sinn Féin MLA Raymond McCartney has called on British Secretary of State Paul Murphy to intervene immediately and release Derry man Martin Doherty, who was arrested and jailed on Wednesday for contempt of the Bloody Sunday Inquiry.

Speaking at a protest in Derry's Guildhall Square, McCartney said:

"It is a disgrace that after the Bloody Sunday Inquiry into the murder of 14 people on the streets of Derry by the British Army, that Mr Doherty is the only person who has been jailed over the events of Bloody Sunday. I believe he is being scapegoated by a vindictive British judicial system."

"Mr Doherty maintains he has nothing to offer the inquiry as he was not there on the day and now he is being imprisoned for not testifying about events he knows nothing about.

"Bloody Sunday was a huge injustice visited upon the people of Derry by the British Government and now they have committed another injustice upon Martin Doherty over the issue. When one thinks that no one has been held to account for the destruction of the murder weapons, despite a preservation order and a court injunction, it is an indictment of the British Government that they have now jailed a republican for contempt of court."

McCartney also called on Dermot Ahern, Minister of Foreign Affairs in Dublin, to use his influence to secure Mr Doherty's release.

An Phoblacht
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