Apology long overdue
Madam – The moment when President Higgins and his wife Sabina paused reflectively before the memorial to Lord Mountbatten was both moving and appropriate. The silent tribute will have struck many people as one of the highlights of the long-awaited and highly successful state visit to our nearest neighbour.
I am glad too to see that Martin McGuinness travelled for the occasion, but his presence reminded me of an issue I believe needs to be addressed by the Republican movement.
It is the fact that neither the IRA nor Sinn Fein has formally apologised for the two-and-a-half decades of violence inflicted in the name of a United Ireland. Expressions of "regret" and references to "all sides" having suffered in the "conflict" we have heard countless times. But never an apology.