By Anne Cadwallader
BELFAST — As the 10th anniversary of the murder of Belfast lawyer Pat Finucane approaches, a report citing evidence of British military collusion in the killing is about to be published.
The report says the three UDA gunmen who burst into Finucane’s home on Feb. 12, 1989, shooting him at close range in his kitchen in front of his wife and children, were the pawns of British military intelligence.
Final work on the 60-page document, still under heavy wraps, is continuing, but it is the result of years of painstaking work by an authoritative human rights group, which cannot be named prior to publication.
It’s believed some confidential details in the report will be made available, for legal reasons, only to the British and Irish governments, but a synopsis of it will be made public.
An insider who’s seen the report said, "It will vindicate the belief of family and friends, who always believed the murder was the result of collusion.
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"What is new is that the report will link in the RUC to the killing. Previously it had been thought only the British Army were involved.
"This report will not be based on speculation and hearsay, but on hard facts which will have to be taken seriously."
The report will be presented to the British and Irish governments, along with a demand for a full public, international and judicial inquiry.
It will be accompanied by a petition of lawyers, British, Irish, U.S. and others, demanding an inquiry be set up to investigate the 1989 killing.
A legal action against the British Ministry of Defense is still before the courts. It came up for mention in Belfast High Court last week but is still at the "discovery" stage, with lawyers seeking documents from the British government.
A case has also been lodged with the European Court of Human Rights. A UN Special Rapporteur, Dr. Data Param Cumaraswamy, last year backed calls for an inquiry into Finucane’s murder.
"Although it’s now 10 years since Pat’s murder, we still feel there are a number of important unresolved issues," said Pearse MacDermott, spokesman for the North’s Solicitors’ Criminal Bar Association. "We would add our voice to those who are calling for an independent inquiry into the killing. Pat’s fight for human rights continues and his anniversary is a constant reminder of the need to seek human rights for all."
Any lawyer wanting to sign the petition should contact Martin Finucane on fax Derry (01504) 266453 or email the Pat Finucane Center on: firstname.lastname@example.org.