Letters to the Editor

Israeli regime operating with impunity from international law

Given the latest atrocities carried out by forces of the Israeli state, when they executed yet more unarmed Palestinian demonstrators in Gaza, it may be worth remembering that the Zionist regime is not engaging in a new tactic but is merely expanding upon its existing policies.

On  December 15 2017, a 29-year-old Palestinian, Ibrahim Abu-Thurayya, was shot dead by an Israeli sniper during a protest against the occupation of Palestine and Trump’s decision to declare Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.

Ibrahim had previously lost both of his legs when the Israeli  military attacked residential areas of Gaza with bombs and missiles in 2008. He was a regular attendee at protests against the brutal actions of the Israeli state, where his wheelchair bound presence spoke volumes about the horrific nature of the Zionist presence in Palestine.

An Israeli spokesperson had declared that there were ‘no moral or professional failures’ with respect to the killing of Ibrahim. Major General Eyal Zamir, of the Israeli forces of Occupation, has stated that the disabled Palestinian was shot ‘to protect the sovereignty of the State of Israel, to prevent infiltration and harm to security infrastructures’.

A spokesperson for the UN has condemned the killing as illegal and immoral and has called for a full and independent investigation. This takes place as the US representative to the UN, Nikki Haley, has previously threatened any member state who opposes the ill-conceived Trump decision to declare Jerusalem as the Israeli capital. The new US embassy in Jerusalem was officially opened on Monday May 14.

It would appear that both the US and Israeli regimes are now operating with virtual impunity with respect to international law. Unless the nations of the world stand together to oppose such actions, the entire planet will pay a heavy price a little further down the line, but none more so than the beleaguered people of Palestine.

Newry, Co Down


Loss of contact with a young relation can be devastating

I welcome a debate held recently in Parliament seeking to establish a child’s right to a relationship with wider family – such as grandparents, aunts and uncles – in case of parental divorce.

For some close family, the loss of contact with a young relation through their childhood can be devastating. Everyone will know stories of aunts actively involved in the upbringing of nephews and nieces who suddenly lost all contact. Grandparents whose grandchildren were their pride and joy who suddenly were denied any relationship with them at all and other wider families where links have been cut. It is heartbreaking for all concerned, causes a huge sense of loss to the adults involved and worst of all deprives the child of someone to provide them with love and care.

It is well established the system presently makes it extraordinarily difficult even for many parents in case of divorce to maintain the relationship with their children they would wish. For grandparents and other relations, it can be impossible. Worlds are turned upside down without any real recourse to re-establish a once loving and caring relationship.
Much is made of children’s rights, but the basic right to the love and affection of a close family member is, in too many cases, not taken into practical consideration when establishing or implementing post-divorce arrangements.

It is welcome that the Ministry of Justice will consider this issue and it is essential we in Northern Ireland are not left behind.
We should be preparing the ground during the present deadlock to ensure as soon as we can, we are able to implement a series of measures ensuring children have that most basic right to a continued relationship with close family members who have been so central to their upbringing.

Alliance, South Belfast


House of Lords should be done away with

I see some fancy titled members of the House of Lords are behaving in a manner opposing the prospects of Britain leaving the European Union.

I find this disgusting, if not disloyal to the British people, who democratically voted for Britain to leave the EU.

It is a long road that has no turning comes to mind.

Surely if Messrs Corbyn & Co are serious of being the next government all they have to do is pledge to permanently do away with the House of Lords.

For a start should the unthinkable occur where Britain even gets a bad deal from the on-going  negotiations of leaving, I for one will vote Labour in any future elections and I am sure there are 17 million plus voters out there who may think as I do.

Logically I see this the best prospect – five or six years of the Labour party, the country will then return to conservatism but without the House of Lords.

Kircubbin, Co Down


Family’s resilience a testimony to us all

Regarding The Irish News editorial ‘Legacy helps others in grief’ (Tuesday May 8). 

I was touched by your description of how Colin and Eithne Bell, in the midst of the death of their son Kevin, shone a light into the darkness of others bereaved.

Their resilience can be a testimony to the rest of us, not content to ask the ‘why’ but to move beyond that and ask (in the midst of grief) can we do something? And something they did.

It is so heartening to read about folk who overcome heartbreak and then go on to create something better for others. The expression that comes to mind is – ‘it is better to light a candle than sit and curse the darkness’. 

Derry City


Thank you Irish News

I would like to thank The Irish News for keeping the public informed about the sad case of Joleen Corr. It was a sad ending for her family who were so devoted to her –  especially her mum. Reading reports from time to time kept her in our thoughts and prayers. Thanks to the Irish News.

Belfast BT14

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