Kingsmill video sectarian, says ex-IRA man Martin McAllister

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A former IRA man who was suspended from the republican movement due to his protest at the 1976 Kingsmills killings has said he believes Barry McElduff’s video was “blatant sectarianism”.

The video, posted on Twitter, showed the MP with a loaf of Kingsmill bread on his head on the anniversary of the Kingsmills massacre.

Ten Protestant workmen were shot dead by the IRA on 5 January 1976.

Mr McElduff insists any offence caused by the video was inadvertent.

However, that argument has been rejected by Mr McAllister, who was a prisoner in the Maze at the time of the killings and wrote a letter from his cell to express his disgust.

“I couldn’t understand how somebody could pull in a minibus full of ordinary people – Protestant people – line them up and shoot them in the name of some cause,” he told BBC News NI.

“I fear that he [Mr McElduff] did know what he was doing.

“To put it in perspective, I can’t hear the name Kingsmill bread mentioned without immediately flashing back to what happened. So how could he miss that?”

When asked what the possible motivation could be for the video, he said it was “profound, disgusting sectarianism”.

He said that the republican movement has never come to terms with Kingsmills and that people try to explain it away.

I’ve had this out with people on quite a few occasions, and there is a proclivity out there to try and divert away attention from the fact that republicans did this by saying “well it was in a certain context at that time”. There is no excuse for what happened.”

Mr McAllister said an honest effort to address the horrific incidents like Kingsmills from our past is needed to find a way through the current political impasse.

“If you look back on Bloody Sunday which was the motivating factor for a lot of people getting involved in armed resistance, David Cameron was fit to stand up and say what went on was wrong.

I’ve had this out with people on quite a few occasions, and there is a proclivity out there to try and divert away attention from the fact that republicans did this by saying “well it was in a certain context at that time”. There is no excuse for what happened.”

Mr McAllister said an honest effort to address the horrific incidents like Kingsmills from our past is needed to find a way through the current political impasse.

“If you look back on Bloody Sunday which was the motivating factor for a lot of people getting involved in armed resistance, David Cameron was fit to stand up and say what went on was wrong.

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