Para tells of Bloody Sunday 'kills'

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The Independent Online
British paratroops who killed 14 civilians on Bloody Sunday in 1972 had been told by an officer to "to get some kills", according to a report in Dublin's Sunday Business Post.

It said an unnamed soldier also alleged his statement on how troops fired on protesters was suppressed by the Army and a version not written by him presented in its place. If true, the claims question the Army's role in providing evidence to the Widgery tribunal, which investigated the killings. Lord Widgery's report said the Army was fired on first, asserting soldiers had fired on gunmen, but qualified this with the ambiguous comment that "each soldier was his own judge of whether he had identified a gunman".

Yesterday's allegations follow other recent claims that key accounts challenging army claims that soldiers fired in retaliation against identified gunmen were ignored by the inquiry.

In his account, the soldier said some victims were killed after a ceasefire order had been given. He described an officer saying on the the night before the shootings "let's teach these buggers some lessons - we want some kills". The soldier recalled that "to the mentality of the blokes to whom he was speaking, this was tantamount to an order".