Martina Anderson MEP speaking at Human Rights Summit at the Hague

 

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Sinn Féin MEP Martina Anderson made a keynote address at a summit on international law and human rights at the Hague.

Ms Anderson told the summit that Britain must fulfil its responsibilities to hold full inquiries into the killing of Pat Finucane and shoot-to-kill cases.

“In every armed conflict one thing is certain; states tell lies. Lies of convenience, lies of contempt, lies of coverup, state lies that kill the hope for truth.

“And crucially, state lies that strangle the status and strength of international law and human rights. The governments of Britain and Israel both claim to uphold international law.

“Yet today, Britain continues to tell lies about its dirty war in Ireland to protect its generals, and Israel constantly carries out its atrocities with impunity.

“Many European countries have a history of colonisation and carrying out acts of state terrorism, yet here at the home to the International Criminal Court we do not see those states in the dock.

“States’ ability to avoid prosecution whilst at the same time wielding power to place others in the dock, is a double standard which is damaging the democratic values of International law and Human Rights.

“The international community – not least the European Union – has historically ignored the lies behind Britain’s violent occupation of Ireland, and avoided the truths buried by Israel’s genocide in the Middle East. Thankfully, that complicit complacency is now changing: The truth is fighting back. And events like today are central to airing the voices of the oppressed.

“Individuals may be murdered by states. But idealism can never be stolen from society.”