Northern Ireland

Magz Gibney, made famous with her letter to Tony Blair, pledges weekly peace wall protest

Margaret Gibney, on protest at the peace wall, has pledged to stand vigil until functioning government is back in place. Picture by Mal McCann
Margaret Gibney, on protest at the peace wall, has pledged to stand vigil until functioning government is back in place. Picture by Mal McCann Margaret Gibney, on protest at the peace wall, has pledged to stand vigil until functioning government is back in place. Picture by Mal McCann

Margaret Gibney, propelled to fame after writing a letter as a 12-year-old 25 years ago to then Prime Minister Tony Blair, has vowed to lead a "peace wall" protest every week until there is fully functioning Northern Ireland government.

Ms Gibney, known as Magz, will also be calling for an end to violence against women in those communities most impacted by the conflict and its aftermath.

The first "creative" protest was held late afternoon on Friday on the interface between the Falls and Shankill roads. She called on people to join her over the coming weeks.

She wants to see a strategy to combat violence against women and girls completed, investment in women’s services and access to support for "women recovering from complex trauma".

A mental health advocate, Ms Gibney said: "What the world media didn’t know was that at the same time as campaigning for peace in Northern Ireland the twelve year old Shankill girl was also seeking safety and justice as a child survivor of sexual abuse and domestic violence.

"I had the privilege of safety and space to recover and reconcile my past. Many survivors don't have access to the justice and support they need todo that and it’s time that change."