BLOODY SUNDAY, IL GIORNO DELLA VERITA’
Ore 15.03 I manifestanti hanno raggiunto Guildhall Square a suon di applausi. Si pensa che ben 5.000 persone abbiano preso parte alla marcia, durante la quale è stata intonata “We Shall Overcome”, un anatema della lotta per i diritti civili dell’epoca. Gran parte delle prove è stato ascoltato presso Guildhall, e il discorso del primo ministro britannico David Cameron, sarà trasmesso in diretta su grandi schermi davanti alla folla riunita.
Ore 14.35 Migliaia di persone si stanno radunando nel Bogside di marciare verso la piazza Guildhall per la pubblicazione della relazione Saville. Circa 2.000 (alle ore 14.30 circa) persone sono già ammassate davanti al memoriale dedicato alla Bloody Sunday in Rossville Street, e la gente continua ad accorrere, vecchi, studenti, politici, membri delle famiglie, tutti a piedi con un solo scopo – verso la marcia. Aspettano vicino al luogo dove molte delle vittime morirono, all’ombra del Free Derry Wall, accanto al monumento che riporta i nomi dei morti.
La cronaca dell’attesa in diretta via messaggi, sul sito BBC News
I familiari delle vittime della Bloody Sunday riuniti alla Guidhall di Derry per la lettura del Rapporto Saville
Il 15 giugno siglerà la parola ‘fine’ sull’inchiesta durata ben 12 anni, volta a far finalmente luce sulle reali responsabilità che hanno portato alla morte di 13 (+1) persone il 30 gennaio 1972, in quella che viene da sempre ricordata come la Bloody Sunday.
Circa 60 familiari delle vittime di questa tragedia, hanno fatto il loro ingresso presso la Guidhall di Derry dopo aver ripercorso in una marcia quello che era stato il tracciato di quella del 30 gennaio 1972, manifestazione civile soffocata nel sangue.
Un’atmosfera surreale si è respirata già dal mattino, come confermato anche da John Kelly, fratello di una delle vittime (Michael Kelly) che ha parlato dell’agitazione che lo ha pervaso nelle ultime 24 ore.
“Mi sono girato e rigirato. Sono sveglio dalle 6. E’ una situazione di nervosismo, la tipica reazione umana”.
“Abbiamo aspettato questo giorno e ora è sopra di noi, è qualcosa di irreale, ma oggi qui e spero di iniziare la nostra marcia verso la Guidhall nei prossimi minuti, sapendo qual’è il risultato”.
L’oggi vice primo ministro Martin McGuinness, all’epoca dei fatti era vice comandante dell’IRA. In questa giornata che passerà alla storia, ha accompagnato il corteo dei familiari insieme a Conor Murphy.
“Questo è un grande giorno per le famiglie, un grande giorno per Derry, un grande giorno per l’Irlanda e un grande giorno per il mondo, perché gli occhi del mondo guardano a cosa sta per accadere”, ha dichiarato McGuinness.
I familiari resteranno presso la Guidhall fino a quando il primo ministro britannico David Cameron comunicherà le reazioni alla House of Commons (discorso previsto per le 15.30).
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Bloody Sunday relatives enter Guildhall (U TV)
Relatives of the victims of Bloody Sunday have entered the Guildhall in Derry to read the long-awaited Saville report into the killings, after retracing the route taken by civil rights marchers in 1972.
Thirty-eight years after 13 civilians were shot dead by British paratroopers, Lord Saville will make public the findings of his 12-year inquiry at the city’s Guildhall at 3.30pm on Tuesday.
The families went into the Guildhall following their march at around 10.25am.
Up to 60 relatives took part in the sombre procession, snaking along a half-mile route in the city under brilliant sunshine.
As the procession began John Kelly, whose brother Michael was killed in the shootings, described his turmoil during the last 24 hours of waiting.
“I’ve turned over and turned over,” he told UTV. “I’m awake now from 6am and it’s a situation of nervousness, the typical human reaction.”
“We’ve been waiting for this day and now it’s upon us, it’s sort of unreal, but we’re here now and hopefully start our walk to the Guild Hall in the next few minutes and know what the result is.”
Sinn Fein MPs Martin McGuinness and Conor Murphy accompanied the procession.
Mr McGuinness, who was second in command of the IRA in Derry in 1972 and now fills the role of Deputy First Minister, said people around the globe would be anxiously awaiting the publication of the Saville report.
“This is a big day for the families, a big day for Derry, a big day for Ireland and a big day for the world, because the eyes of the world are looking at what is going to happen.”
“Really what the people are seeking is very simple and very straightforward – the exoneration of their loved ones.
“They want to see the finger of responsibility pointed where it needs to be pointed, at the British State and the British parachute regiment, who were described as the crack regiment of the British Army.”
UTV’s Niall Donnelly watched as the procession took place.
“They assembled at the Memorial spot down on the Bogside clutching photographs of their loved ones before beginning the 10 minute walk from Guildhall Square,” he said.
“They were watched by hoards of media as they made their way into the building they were applauded as they made their way inside”.
The Guildhall clock chimed as the families began the tense task of sifting through the 160 volumes of data, with an estimated 30 million words.
Bishop of Derry said he hopes that the report findings will allow a fresh start for the people of Derry.
“My hope is that this will prove to be a positive turning point not just for the families concerned but for the city as a whole,” Ken Good told UTV.
“It is an opportunity for healing and it could well shape the future for all of us in constructive ways”
“It could be an opening up of possibilities for shared understanding because Bloody Sunday and what happened subsequently has been like a cloud or shadow that has restricted the way forward among the community in the city and I hope this will mean a new start”.
Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness (centre) with Kay Duddy sister of victim Jackie Duddy, as relatives of those shot dead on Bloody Sunday march to the Guildhall in Londonderry where they will receive copies of the long-awaited Saville report.
Relatives of the victims will remain locked in the Guildhall until Prime Minister David Cameron gives the Government’s reaction in a statement to the House of Commons.
Downing Street said Mr Cameron – who was just five years old at the time of the shootings – regarded Lord Saville’s report as “a very important statement”.
Tory MP and former soldier Bob Stewart told UTV he believes the events of Bloody Sunday were totally unjustified.
“It was a total tragedy and in my view the parachute regiment got it totally wrong and I have always thought that,” said Mr Stewart, who served in Northern Ireland in the 70s.
“It’s going to cast a shadow over the parachute regiment in particular, the British army a bit, and the whole of society to be honest”
“Thirteen killed on the night, 14 in total quite frankly it’s totally unacceptable”
“As a solider who served in Northern Ireland and loves the place and the people I found it abysmal at the time and my view has not changed”.
UTV Correspondent Mark McFadden, who has covered the Saville Inquiry since it began, said the city of Derry never fully emerged from the shadows of Bloody Sunday.
Speaking from Guildhall Square, he said:
“There is a rather strange and almost serene air in the city as people hold their breath for this historic moment”.
“It’s going to be a terribly emotional day for the families, when you think how long they have waited to hear this report”.
“We are talking about the lives of those who were lost – fathers, sons, brothers, so it is a very raw emotional day for many of those of families”.
It is widely expected that the report will declare that those shot dead on Bloody Sunday were innocent civilians, a view already publicly expressed by two Prime Minister and told to Lord Saville by the paratroopers themselves.
What, if any, action will follow the report’s publication remains to be seen.
Some families have expressed a desire to push for prosecutions.
“I believe that the perpetrators of murder should be brought to justice for their deeds,” said John Kelly, whose brother was shot dead on Bloody Sunday.
“Certainly Soldier F who murdered my brother – I saw him in London giving evidence and during that period of time he showed absolutely no remorse.
“I want to see him again, in the dock, in a court of law, being prosecuted for multiple murder.”
But DUP MP Gregory Campbell has already warned of the “political ramifications” if such prosecutions went ahead in isolation.
He said prosecutions of the paratroopers involved in Bloody Sunday would be “untenable” without investigations into other murders – including those carried out by the Provisional IRA.