Presidential hopeful Martin McGuinness was confronted, by the son of a murdered Irish soldier, while canvassing in Athlone on Monday afternoon. He asked that McGuinness name those responsible for the IRA killing.
Dramatic RTE footage shows 35-year-old, David Kelly, whose father was murdered in 1983 confront McGuinness about his involvement in the IRA and his death.
His father, Patrick, was shot dead along with trainee policeman Gary Sheehan, 23, at Derrada woods near Ballinamore, Co Leitrim, during the rescue of kidnapped supermarket tycoon Don Tidey in 1983.
Kelly said “I want justice for my father, I believe you know the names of the killers of my father. You were on the Army council of the IRA”.
The presidential candidate repeatedly denied this and scoffed at Kelly’s claims that there was proof of his IRA membership in Ed Maloney’s book, “The History of the IRA”.
Irish Republic needs Martin McGuinness says Guardian writer
Martin McGuinness says Irish public don't care about his IRA past
Sinn Feinn now second most popular party, new poll shows
Kelly continued “We’re not going to agree about the past but I want justice for my father. He was loyal to this Irish Republic, and I’m loyal to him as a son and I want to get justice for him. I accuse you today. I don’t believe you…you’re a liar.”
The candidate responded “I’m not a liar, I’m not a liar”.
He said “I sympathize with you. I have been at the heart of a very important peace process in the North over the last 20 years which has brought conflict and violence and death to an end. I’m going to continue with that work because that’s the work of peace.
This [Paddy Kelly’s murder] is in the past, you’re heartbroken on account of it and my sympathy is 100 percent with you and with your family.”
Kelly added that he believed the Irish presidential election should be about truth, saying that was all he was looking for. He also confirmed that coroner’s reports had confirmed, 100 percent, that Paddy Kelly had been killed by an IRA bullet.
Kelly ended by demanding truth now saying “I want truth now. Murder is murder.”