“they see it as an awkward subject, best avoided.”

Via Newshound. The Newry Democrat reports from one of the Victims Commission’s public meetings. The report carries the response from Mike Nesbitt to comments by Anne Morgan, the sister of Seamus Ruddy who was murdered by the INLA in France in May 1985, on her concerns about the recently introduced Presumption of Death Bill. From the Newry Democrat report

THE families of The Disappeared have suffered from a conspiracy of silence at the hands of churches, paramilitaries and the Government. That was the assessment of Victims and Survivors Commissioner Mike Nesbitt during a visit to Newry Arts Centre on Monday night.

Fellow commissioners Bertha McDougall, Patricia McBride and Newry man Brendan McAllister joined Mr Nesbitt on the panel. They were in the city to explain their initial framework programme for dealing with the victims and survivors of the Troubles. “It does not add up they see it as an awkward subject, best avoided. That speaks volumes,” said Mr Nesbitt.

Also from the Newry Democrat report

Mrs Murphy was interruptted by the panel who claimed to have no knowledge of the document. [the Presumption of Death Bill]

“We would definitely be interested in learning more about it. We will investigate,” said Mrs McDougall. Speaking to the Democrat after the meeting Mrs Morgan said she felt it had been a waste of time.

“I came looking for support and clarification of what they would do for the Disappeared I got neither,” she said. Mrs Morgan explained that jumping through hoops for death certificates would be too traumatic for families.

“I hope they do make the effort to investigate the situation. There is no point in waiting for it to become law,” she said. “I am very sceptical at this point about what the Victims Commissioners will be able to do for us.”

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