27/02/2003

€3m fund created for Republic's Troubles victims

The Irish government has announced the setting up of a €3 million fund for victims of the Troubles in the Republic of Ireland.

Taoiseach Bertie Ahern TD announced the move today which forms part of the government's commitments under the Good Friday Agreement.

The government said that the fund was established as it is "essential to acknowledge and address the suffering of the victims of violence as a necessary element of reconciliation".

The funding will be allocated by the Remembrance Fund Commission – which is expected to be similar in its remit to the Memorial Fund in Northern Ireland – which will be established on a statutory basis in the very near future.

The establishment of the Commission follows on from the work of former Tánaiste John Wilson, and the publication of the Victims Commission Report 'A Place and a Name' in 1999.

The Justice for the Forgotten group, which represents families of victims killed in the 1974 Monaghan and Dublin bombings, said it was "delighted" by the move.

The legislation establishing the Commission will be published shortly.

(GMcG)

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