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By Catherine McCartney
“The last posting of 2013 on thebrokenelbow.com is given over to Catherine McCartney, whose brother Robert was brutally murdered by the IRA in January 2005 and who gives her own assessment of the Redemptorist priest, Fr Alec Reid who died last November.”
**Please read on >>THE BROKEN ELBOW – ED MOLONEY
28 Jan 2013
The anniversary march was the first since the PSNI said it was opening a new investigation into Bloody Sunday
Up to 3,000 people have attended a march in Derry to mark the 41st anniversary of Bloody Sunday, when 14 civilians were killed after British army paratroopers opened fired on a civil rights demonstration in the Bogside area.
At Free Derry Corner the crowds were addressed by Bernadette McAliskey, who had been the main speaker at the Bloody Sunday rally in 1972.
This was the first commemoration in Derry since the PSNI confirmed last month that it is opening what it says will be a lengthy and complex investigation into the events of 1972.
That decision by the police followed the Saville Public Inquiry into Bloody Sunday and after an apology was given to the victims and their families by British Prime Minister David Cameron in the House of Commons.
Earlier, on the other side of Derry city, several hundred people attended a loyalist protest linked to the ongoing Union flag controversy.
This weekend also marks the 8th anniversary of the killing of Robert McCartney.
He was an innocent man who was attacked when attempting to intervene in a row in a Belfast bar.
The clientele there include a group who had earlier attended a Bloody Sunday commemoration in Derry.
Nobody has ever been brought to justice for Mr McCartney’s murder.
November 02 2012
Padraic Wilson, pictured in 1999
A former IRA leader in the Maze prison in Northern Ireland has been remanded into custody on charges linked to a police investigation into a murder outside a Belfast bar.
Padraic Wilson was accused of IRA membership and addressing a meeting encouraging support for the organisation.
A detective told Belfast Magistrates’ Court that Wilson, 53, took part in a meeting with the sisters of Robert McCartney, 33, who was stabbed to death outside the pub in 2005. The court was told police were not connecting him to the murder.
Wilson was the leader of IRA prisoners in the Maze in the late 1990s. He was remanded in custody after police expressed fears the political manager would intimidate witnesses, a claim denied by his lawyer Peter Madden. A detective told the court: “The police objections to bail are based on our concerns of interference with witnesses and reoffending.”
He said it is alleged that at the time the offences took place in 2005, the accused, a married father-of-two from Hamill Park in Andersonstown, west Belfast, was reported to be a member of the IRA’s ruling army council.
“He still holds a significant position of influence within portions of the community and because of that we have concerns that there would be interference with witnesses,” the policeman said.
He said six witness statements had been received from Mr McCartney’s sisters and former partner accusing him of involvement in an IRA internal investigation following the murder of Mr McCartney.
The detective said: “It is alleged that Mr Wilson and an unidentified person met with the family in their capacity as members of the IRA and as representatives of the Army Council of the IRA. That role was carrying out an internal investigation into the murder. It is alleged that at least two meetings were held with members of the family and Mr Wilson.”
The detective said the McCartney family were able to identify Wilson recently through internet research and recognised him as he person who took the lead in addressing the meetings. He said: “This is an unusual case and it certainly would be our belief that Mr Wilson would have the ability to influence things and that is something which will be difficult to manage.”
Wilson, who wore a checked shirt, spoke only to confirm he understood the charges. Magistrate Fiona Bagnall remanded him in custody to November 30.
November 2, 2012
BELFAST, Northern Ireland (AP) — Padraic Wilson, an official in the Irish nationalist Sinn Fein party, has been charged with Irish Republican Army membership in a case that highlights a pivotal unsolved murder, the 2005 stabbing of a Catholic civilian outside a Belfast pub.
The victim’s sisters complained the IRA covered up evidence and received White House backing, embarrassing Sinn Fein and spurring the major IRA faction, the Provisionals, to renounce violence and disarm that year.
But nobody has been convicted of killing Robert McCartney. His sisters, however, have told police that Padraic Wilson was one of two IRA officials who met them about the murder.
In Friday’s Belfast court appearance Wilson was charged with membership in an outlawed organization and organizing IRA meetings. His lawyers rejected the charge, and Sinn Fein demanded his immediate release.
By Suzanne Breen
Friday, 2 November 2012
Robert McCartney and son
A senior Sinn Fein member and former Provisional IRA leader has been arrested in connection with the murder of Robert McCartney.
The 53-year-old west Belfast man, who is a well-known figure in mainstream republican circles, was taken to Antrim serious crime suite for questioning by detectives.
The arrest will be a major embarrassment for Sinn Fein. The prominent republican has held several senior positions in the Provisional movement, including in the Maze prison where he was serving a life sentence.
When he was granted early release under the Good Friday Agreement, he was greeted at the prison gates by Sinn Fein politician Gerry Kelly, who described him as “a close friend” and praised his leadership role. The republican was convicted in early 1990s of possessing explosives and conspiracy to murder.
Sources said the man’s arrest follows substantial new detailed information given to the PSNI recently.
No-one has been convicted for the murder of Mr McCartney, a father-of-two from the Short Strand, who was beaten and stabbed to death outside Magennis’s bar in Belfast city centre in January 2005.
Three men were charged in connection with the killing: Terry Davison with murder, and Jim McCormick and Joe Fitzpatrick with causing an affray. But they were all acquitted in 2008. Robert McCartney’s sister Paula last night said: “Our family welcomes the latest arrest but is treating it with caution. However, we hope that, after all these years, we secure justice for Robert who was so brutally murdered by the IRA.”
Robert McCartney (33) was killed after trying to help his friend, Brendan Devine, who had become involved in a row in Magennis’s. It was alleged that the IRA’s Belfast commander ordered the murder after the argument.
As well as a fatal stab wound to the stomach, Mr McCartney suffered a broken nose and arm and leg injuries.
The McCartneys claim that the IRA forensically cleaned the pub to hide all evidence.
Mr McCartney’s five sisters and his partner, Bridgeen Hagans, waged a campaign to bring his killers to justice.