PSNI Statement Regarding McGurk's Bar Atrocity
Chief Constable George Hamilton, ACC Mark Hamilton, and Policing Board Chair Anne Connolly met with the families before today’s Policing Board Meeting.
Commenting afterwards, ACC Mark Hamilton, Head of the PSNI’s Legacy and Justice Branch, said: “We were happy to meet with the families and listen to their concerns.
“We are acutely aware that the 45th anniversary of this terrible attack is this weekend and as such, this is a difficult time for the families of those killed and injured and I would like to take this opportunity to express my sympathy to everyone.”
Reaffirming what was said at today’s Policing Board meeting, ACC Hamilton continued: “The PSNI would like to reiterate our position in respect of the McGurk’s Bar atrocity in 1971, the subsequent Royal Ulster Constabulary investigation into the 15 murders and the Police Ombudsman’s report into that investigation.
“During judicial review proceedings in September 2015, we stated that the Chief Constable fully accepts the findings of the Police Ombudsman regarding the original investigation into the McGurk’s bar atrocity, including the finding of investigative bias. We have redrafted the original Historical Enquiries Team Report to unequivocally reflect this position.
“We also accept that these murders were carried out by the UVF and any previous attribution to the Provisional IRA was incorrect.
“The atrocity has been subject of investigation by our Serious Crime Branch and unfortunately there are currently no new lines of enquiry which would assist us in bringing to justice the accomplices of the UVF terrorist who was convicted in connection with the atrocity.
“If new evidence emerges, the PSNI will thoroughly examine it to establish if it warrants a further reinvestigation of these killings and would once again appeal to anyone in possession of information or evidence which would help bring more people to justice to come forward.”
The Chief Constable also agreed to examine the material provided to him by the families and has assured them that a meeting will be organised with a senior officer in due course.