Ulster compensation scheme causes row

Plans to compensate the families of paramilitary fighters killed in Northern Ireland have caused anger on both sides of the sectarian divide.



A government-commissioned report is expected to propose a 12,000-pound payment for every family who lost a member in 30 years of violence in which more than 3,600 people were killed, local media said.



The Consultative Group on the Past will publish its official report tomorrow and has not commented on its content.



Unionists said a blanket compensation scheme would put paramilitaries who fought British rule in Northern Ireland on a par with civilian victims, police officers or British soldiers.



Catholic nationalists said London was trying to pay off victims instead of giving an account of its role in the conflict.



"We will not give our support to any proposal which would blur the line between the terrorist and the innocent victim," said Peter Robinson, head of the Democratic Unionist Party and First Minister in Northern Ireland's regional executive.



There was similar disappointment from those who have campaigned for a united Ireland.



"There are many victims' organisations that fear that the Eames/Bradley proposals will ... allow the British state to continue its policy ... of cover up and concealment," said Gerry Adams, president of the nationalist Sinn Fein party, a political ally of the IRA.



The Consultative Group on the Past is jointly chaired by a former Primate of the (Protestant) Church of Ireland, Lord Robin Eames, and Denis Bradley, a former Catholic priest and first deputy chairman of the Northern Ireland Policing Board. Both were nominated by the British government.



Legacy commission

A power-sharing pact between Northern Ireland's political foes in 2007 cemented a 1998 peace deal brokered by former Sen. George Mitchell, who was named this month as US President Barack Obama's Middle East envoy.



The independent IMC watchdog said last year the IRA's ruling army council was no longer operational and the group no longer posed a threat to peace.



The Ulster Volunteer Force, the most lethal of Northern Ireland's pro-British paramilitary groups, said in 2007 it would put "beyond reach" its weapons used against Catholics. The Independent Monitoring Commission said the UVF needed to go beyond its verbal pledge and fully disarm in a verifiable way as the IRA had done.



Isolated acts of violence still occur and the power-sharing executive did not meet for almost half of 2008 due to a row over the province's judiciary and police force.



The Relatives for Justice group campaigning for the families of victims of alleged state murders said the compensation debate missed the point of what they were looking for.



"For those families, their focus is not on compensation or reparation but principally the truth about what happened," director Mark Thompson told Reuters.



Wednesday's report will propose a "Legacy Commission" to investigate the conflict, but will not call for an amnesty or try to imitate South Africa's Truth and Reconciliation Commission by holding public hearings, newspapers said.

News
people'It can last and it's terrifying'
Sport
Danny Welbeck's Manchester United future is in doubt
footballGunners confirm signing from Manchester United
Sport
footballStriker has moved on loan for the remainder of the season
Sport
footballFeaturing Bart Simpson
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
New Articles
Olivia Colman topped the list of the 30 most influential females in broadcasting
tv
News
Kelly Brook
peopleA spokesperson said the support group was 'extremely disappointed'
News
The five geckos were launched into space to find out about the effects of weightlessness on the creatures’ sex lives
i100
Life and Style
techIf those brochure kitchens look a little too perfect to be true, well, that’s probably because they are
Sport
Andy Murray celebrates a shot while playing Jo-Wilfried Tsonga
TennisWin sets up blockbuster US Open quarter-final against Djokovic
Arts and Entertainment
Hare’s a riddle: Kit Williams with the treasure linked to Masquerade
booksRiddling trilogy could net you $3m
Arts and Entertainment
Alex Kapranos of Franz Ferdinand performs live
music Pro-independence show to take place four days before vote
News
news Video - hailed as 'most original' since Benedict Cumberbatch's
News
i100
Life and Style
The longer David Sedaris had his Fitbit, the further afield his walks took him through the West Sussex countryside
lifeDavid Sedaris: What I learnt from my fitness tracker about the world
Arts and Entertainment
Word master: Self holds up a copy of his novel ‘Umbrella’
booksUnlike 'talented mediocrity' George Orwell, you must approach this writer dictionary in hand
News
i100
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

SQL Implementation Consultant (VB,C#, SQL, Java, Eclipse, integ

£40000 - £50000 per annum + benefits+bonus+package: Harrington Starr: SQL Impl...

SQL Technical Implementation Consultant (Java, BA, Oracle, VBA)

£45000 - £55000 per annum + Benefits + Bonus: Harrington Starr: SQL Technical ...

Head of IT (Windows, Server, VMware, SAN, Fidessa, Equities)

£85000 per annum: Harrington Starr: Head of IT (Windows, Server, VMware, SAN, ...

Lead C# Developer (.Net, nHibernate, MVC, SQL) Surrey

£55000 - £60000 per annum + Benefits + Bonus: Harrington Starr: Lead C# Develo...

Day In a Page

'I’ll tell you what I would not serve - lamb and potatoes': US ambassador hits out at stodgy British food served at diplomatic dinners

'I’ll tell you what I would not serve - lamb and potatoes'

US ambassador hits out at stodgy British food
Radio Times female powerlist: A 'revolution' in TV gender roles

A 'revolution' in TV gender roles

Inside the Radio Times female powerlist
Endgame: James Frey's literary treasure hunt

James Frey's literary treasure hunt

Riddling trilogy could net you $3m
Fitbit: Because the tingle feels so good

Fitbit: Because the tingle feels so good

What David Sedaris learnt about the world from his fitness tracker
Saudis risk new Muslim division with proposal to move Mohamed’s tomb

Saudis risk new Muslim division with proposal to move Mohamed’s tomb

Second-holiest site in Islam attracts millions of pilgrims each year
Alexander Fury: The designer names to look for at fashion week this season

The big names to look for this fashion week

This week, designers begin to show their spring 2015 collections in New York
Will Self: 'I like Orwell's writing as much as the next talented mediocrity'

'I like Orwell's writing as much as the next talented mediocrity'

Will Self takes aim at Orwell's rules for writing plain English
Meet Afghanistan's middle-class paint-ballers

Meet Afghanistan's middle-class paint-ballers

Toy guns proving a popular diversion in a country flooded with the real thing
Al Pacino wows Venice

Al Pacino wows Venice

Ham among the brilliance as actor premieres two films at festival
Neil Lawson Baker interview: ‘I’ve gained so much from art. It’s only right to give something back’.

Neil Lawson Baker interview

‘I’ve gained so much from art. It’s only right to give something back’.
The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

Wife of President Robert Mugabe appears to have her sights set on succeeding her husband
The model of a gadget launch: Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed

The model for a gadget launch

Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed
Alice Roberts: She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

Alice Roberts talks about her new book on evolution - and why her early TV work drew flak from (mostly male) colleagues
Get well soon, Joan Rivers - an inspiration, whether she likes it or not

Get well soon, Joan Rivers

She is awful. But she's also wonderful, not in spite of but because of the fact she's forever saying appalling things, argues Ellen E Jones
Doctor Who Into the Dalek review: A classic sci-fi adventure with all the spectacle of a blockbuster

A fresh take on an old foe

Doctor Who Into the Dalek more than compensated for last week's nonsensical offering