Secret British Army archives have revealed new witness testimony of the suspect car used in the McGurk’s Bar bombing.
This is the first time that the victims’ families have been told that a witness gave critical evidence of the suspect car to a British Army officer at the scene of the attack the following morning.
Previous historic investigations by Police Service Northern Ireland/ Historical Inquiries Team and the Office Police Ombudsman either completely missed this witness evidence or chose to keep it buried.
British Army unit, Call Sign 959, reported to its Tactical Headquarters of 2nd Battalion of Royal Regiment Fusiliers stationed close-by that:
“A person came up to an NCO [Non-Commissioned Officer] with info re explosion was by pub for half an hour, saw large dark car with white patch on left front side, noticed before explosion. Thinks bomb placed in off licence entrance. Informant reckoned bomb was intended for Hanagans [sic] Bar which is on the corner of North Queen St [and Henry St].”
Hannigan’s Bar was the local name for the Gem Bar.
This information proved to be correct and corroborated much of what we later learned from the newspaper boy eyewitness – especially his description of a two-tone car and where the bomb was placed by the attackers.
Ciarán MacAirt said:
“The British Ministry of Defence never made this significant corroborating testimony available to successive historic investigations or the families. Either the historic investigations did not discover it or chose to keep it buried.”
“The families will be raising this new evidence with the Office of the Police Ombudsman along with other critical evidence it missed including the discovery of a covert British military operation in the vicinity and the secret agreement between the RUC and General Sir Frank Kitson to blame our loved ones for the masscare.”
The Canary: New Documents raise serious questions about the British Army’s knowledge of the McGurk’s Bar bombing by Peadar Ó Cearnaigh. Read more…
Watch McGurk’s Bar Bombing: Post-Script