Friday 6 December 2019

€5m bill to search for the Disappeared'

File photo: The remains of Brendan Megraw were discovered by a drainage ditch in the middle of Oristown bog
File photo: The remains of Brendan Megraw were discovered by a drainage ditch in the middle of Oristown bog

Niall O'Connor

GERRY Adams is facing fresh calls to come forward with information on the whereabouts of the remains of victims murdered by the IRA during The Troubles.

New figures show that over €5m has been spent to fund the cost of searches for the remains of 16 individuals classified as the 'Disappeared'.

The bill relates to the operation of the Independent Commission for the Location of Victims' Remains (ICLVR) which falls under the remit of the Department of Justice.

According to details obtained by Labour TD Robert Dowds, the remains of six individuals suspected of being murdered by the IRA are still missing.

The most recent remains were recovered last month and belong to Brendan Megraw (23), who was abducted in April 1978.

In response to a parliamentary question by Mr Dowds, Justice Minister Frances Fitzgerald confirmed that €5.1m has been spent searching for 'Disappeared' victims since 2006.

"Of the 16 people on the ICLVR's list of the disappeared, 10 have been recovered to date, the most recent being Brendan Megraw whose remains were found by the ICLVR last month in Co Meath. Our thoughts are with the Megraw family, whose decades-long wait is now over and who will, I hope, gain comfort from finally being able to afford their loved one a proper burial," she said.

The details of the ongoing searches for the remaining six missing victims have heaped fresh pressure on Sinn Fein.

Mr Dowds last night became the latest political figure to call on Mr Adams or any member of Sinn Fein to come forward with any information they may have on the 'Disappeared'.

"If Gerry Adams or any former Sinn Féin/IRA members have any further information on the location of these bodies, I would encourage them to come forward in order to help end the heartache of the families concerned, and to save the taxpayer the continuing expense of the ongoing search," Mr Dowds said.

Irish Independent

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