A senior British general and a colonel who served in Northern Ireland have called for Martin McGuinness to face murder charges for his role in the IRA .

McGuinness is now Deputy First Minister in Northern Ireland, but he has stated he was in the IRA. He was believed to be second-in-command of the IRA in Derry at the time of Bloody Sunday.

It follows the revelation that the inquiry into the killing of 14 unarmed civilians on Bloody Sunday in Derry in 1972  will recommend prosecution against some soldiers of the British paratroop regiment.

The Saville Inquiry reports on Tuesday after 12 years, 2500 witnesses and $300 million spent.

Already there has been very hostile British and Unionist reaction to its expected findings.

Major-General Julian Thompson, a Royal Marines commanding officer in south Armagh during the Troubles, said that if Saville found troops guilty then McGuinness should be prosecuted.

"In that case, let's prosecute the IRA as well, men like McGuinness. How about drawing a line under this unless we want to go and prosecute all the IRA guys who murdered as well? It's ironic that these guys [British soldiers] could be prosecuted and the people who've murdered 20 times more than they have are being allowed off ," said Thompson.

Colonel Richard Kemp, a Northern Ireland tour veteran, said it was a "serious error" to prosecute soldiers so long after the event.

"And let's not forget that we have had IRA murderers let off and not prosecuted and brought into government," he said.

"Let's open an investigation into some of Martin McGuinness's activities, shall we?"

Politicians in Belfast  and London now fear that the recommendations of the Saville report may cause huge problems for the peace process with soldiers ending up in the dock.

Lord Trimble, the former Ulster Unionist party leader and Nobel peace laureate sated that the new report meant that soldiers would be tried for murder or manslaughter.

Meanwhile, it has been revealed that one of the ex-paratroopers who gave evidence to the Saville inquiry has been living under a witness protection program for 10 years amid fear that he will be gunned down by former colleagues.

The man, known as  Soldier 027, told the inquiry that soldiers in his company had been encouraged to "get some kills" the night before Bloody Sunday, and that was seen   as "tantamount to an order."

He claimed two of his fellow soldiers  shot between eight and 10 demonstrators, he said.

Paratroopers shot dead 13 unarmed men on a civil rights march in the Bogside in January 1972. A 14th man died of his wounds several months later. The killings became a turning point  in the history of The Troubles.


Bloody Sunday Report to be released next weekStock