Northern Ireland

Sinn Féin MP John Finucane reiterates call for public inquiry into his father's murder ahead of vigil to mark 34th anniversary of lawyer's killing

Murdered solicitor Pat Finucane. Picture by Pacemaker
Murdered solicitor Pat Finucane. Picture by Pacemaker Murdered solicitor Pat Finucane. Picture by Pacemaker

SINN Féin MP John Finucane has reiterated calls for an independent public inquiry into the 1989 murder of his father.

Prominent defence solicitor Pat Finucane was shot dead by the UDA in his Fortwilliam Drive home on February 12 1989. His wife Geraldine was injured in the attack.

Sunday marks the 34th anniversary of the 39-year-old father of three's murder, in which a 2004 report by Judge Peter Cory concluded there was "strong evidence" of collusion, including MI5 being aware Mr Finucane was under threat.

In November 2020, the then secretary of state Brandon Lewis ruled out a public inquiry into state collusion in the killing, however, a year later the High Court ruled that the British government was in breach of its legal obligation to carry out an investigation into the murder.

A vigil will take place at the family's north Belfast home on Sunday to mark the anniversary of the killing.

The murdered lawyer's son John, who was elected MP for North Belfast in 2019, called on the British government to fulfil a pledge to the family hold a full and independent public inquiry.

“And they should scrap the cruel and callous legacy bill that is about closing the door on truth and justice for families like mine who have campaigned for decades," he said.

Mr Finucane thanked Relatives for Justice for organising the event to mark the anniversary.

“We haven’t been able to have this vigil in recent years but I know there are those who will be attending on Sunday, and as a family we are so grateful for their continued support," he said.

The Sinn Féin representative said solicitor Peter Madden would on the family's most recent legal challenge against the British government, while Mr Finucane's widow will also speak at the event.