The parents of Tim Parry, the 12-year-old killed in an IRA bomb attack in 1993, have borne their loss with remarkable grace, Gerry Adams said last night.
Mr Adams paid tribute to Colin and Wendy Parry, whose son died along with three-year-old Johnathan Ball in Warrington.
As he took part in a debate on paths to peace in London's Canary Wharf and shared a platform with Mr Parry, the West Belfast MP apologised for the hurt inflicted by Irish republicans during the Troubles.
Mr Adams said that he wanted to "acknowledge Colin and Wendy Parry's personal journey and how they have created this positive space from the place of deep trauma and grief".
He said Irish republicans were responsible for the attack and acknowledged the "huge grief" caused.
Mr Adams said the IRA had apologised to all "non-combatants" and their families in 2002, adding: "I do so again this evening."
Colin and Wendy Parry have set up a foundation to encourage reconciliation in Northern Ireland with the support of Wilf and Marie Ball, Johnathan's parents.
In March 2000, the Duchess of Kent officially opened a peace centre in Warrington on the seventh anniversary of the atttack.
Prior to the debate Mr Parry had acknowledged it would be difficult to share a platform with Mr Adams.Reuse content