Minister Dermot Ahern Welcomes Breakthrough for the ‘Shot At Dawn’ Campaign
The Minister for Foreign Affairs, Mr Dermot Ahern T.D., welcomed today's announcement by the British Government proposing new moves towards a retrospective pardon for those soldiers executed for military offences during the First World War, including 26 Irish volunteers.
The Minister said “We believe that a grave injustice was done to those young men and the Government has therefore given its full support to the Irish Shot at Dawn Campaign. This was done so that we could recover their memory from dishonour and bring comfort to their families, and also in the wider spirit of recognising the experience and sacrifice of the tens of thousands of young men from all across this island who fell during the First World War.”
“In October 2004, the Government formally submitted a comprehensive report on this issue to the British Government through our Embassy in London. We have been in regular contact since then with a view to finding a satisfactory resolution to this issue. We now look forward to discussing these new proposals with the British authorities during the forthcoming consultation process.”
16 August 2006 ENDS+++
Note for Editors:
The Government's report - “'Shot at Dawn': The Report into the Courts-Martial and Execution of Twenty Six Irish Soldiers by the British Army during World War I” - was released in March 2006. The full text is available at 'www.dfa.ie/angloirish/ShotatDawnReport.pdf'