Statement from the family of the late Bob Buchanan

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The family of the late Superintendent Bob Buchanan, acknowledges that the Tribunal of Inquiry, chaired by Judge Peter Smithwick in Dublin, is endeavouring to obtain the truth in relation to the events of 20th March 1989 and the possible collusion by members of An Garda Siochana and members of the Provisional Irish Republican Army. However, without the attendance of all witnesses who can provide assistance to ensure the Tribunal can establish the truth this process will find it impossible to find a firm conclusion.

The Buchanan family greatly appreciate the considerable assistance which has been provided by both retired and serving members of the RUC/PSNI.

However, it is known that a number of former police RUC/PSNI officers and serving PSNI officers hold valuable information that would be of assistance to this Tribunal. Some have already spoken to the Tribunal but have been unable to attend to date. We trust these people will endeavour to communicate with the Tribunal staff to ensure a suitable date can be arranged before the end of the evidence hearing process.

There are also others, who may not realise the importance of the information they possess. A short discussion would clarify the position.

The Buchanan family understand there are many reasons why potential witnesses are reluctant to come forward. However, they would ask anyone who considers they can contribute to speak to the family solicitor Mr Ernie Waterworth, of McCartan Turkington Breen. Mr Waterworth can be contacted at +44 28 9032 9801.

Any discussions would be on a strictly without prejudice and non-committal basis. If, following discussions, such witnesses do not wish to give evidence the matter will end there. There can be no compulsion for those outside the jurisdiction of the Tribunal to attend.

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By Gerard Cunningham

Gerard Cunningham occupies his time working as a journalist, writer, sub-editor, blogger and podcaster, yet still finds himself underemployed.