Monaghan Vigil to remember Derry’s Bloody Sunday
A large crown gathered on Monaghan’s Diamond on Sunday evening to remember the Bloody Sunday atrocity in Derry when the British Army’s Parachute Regiment murdered fourteen innocent people who were participating in a march against internment on 30th January 1971.
50 years later, those gathered in Monaghan from 6pm on Sunday evening held black flags and candles. Among those in attendance was local Sinn Féin TD, Matt Carthy, who organised the event, Fianna Fáil TD Niamh Smith and former Dáil Deputy Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin. Councillors Brian McKenna, Cathy Bennett, Sean Conlon, Pat Treanor, Colm Carthy and Noel Keelan were also present. The Monaghan vigil was replicated across the country with similar events held in dozens of towns and villages in each of the 32 counties. In Derry a weekend-long series of commemorative events culminated in a march on Sunday morning.
Speaking following the Monaghan vigil, Deputy Matt Carthy said:
“Bloody Sunday was a seminal moment in Irish history. For many people in this country and across the world it was the moment of realisation as to the aggressive, oppressive role of the British military in the north of our country.
“26 innocent people were shot by the British army that day. 14 were to die of their wounds. The response by the British government was to spread lies about those who were murdered.
“I want to pay tribute to the Bloody Sunday families, their determination and dignity over the past 50 years has been remarkable. It is because of their tireless efforts over many decades that the truth of what happened on Bloody Sunday is now known throughout the world.
“All those who lost love-ones during the conflict deserve the truth. This is particularly necessary for families of victims of British state murder because Westminster governments have gone to such lengths to deny access to truth and justice. The most recent incarnation of that is the attempt by the current British government to introduce an amnesty for all their agents during the conflict, in direct violation of previous commitments.
“I commend all those who, over the past 50 years, supported the families of Bloody Sunday victims and all others who suffered at the hand of British aggression. In many instances those who supported the victims were themselves attacked by the establishment north and south. They have been vindicated.
“In 2022, we owe it to the victims of Bloody Sunday and their families to work to build a new and better future for all citizens, one that will never allow the injustices of the past to be repeated”.