Statement by the Minister for Foreign Affairs, Brian Cowen T.D. Re:Policing Board Recommendations on Omagh
The Government welcomes the report setting out the authoritative conclusions of the Policing Board regarding the Omagh investigation. We believe that the Board's decisions are essential to progress in the Omagh investigation and to addressing the important structural issues raised by the Ombudsman and the McVicker Report. It is incumbent on all those concerned to give the Board's report the careful consideration it deserves.
The Government also welcomes the fact that the Board's recommendations have been supported by the Ombudsman and the Chief Constable.
The Government looks forward to a close and constructive working relationship between the Gárdaí, the External Investigation Officer and the Assistant Chief Constable to be appointed in an oversight role.
The Government reiterates its determination to help bring to justice all the perpetrators of the Omagh atrocity. The decisions of the Policing Board in regard to new accounting structures and new policing and oversight roles will, we hope, create further opportunities to ensure that outcome.
These conclusions represent a significant achievement for the Board, acting unanimously, in charting a way forward on what has been a difficult and at times fraught issue. It is a reflection of the ability and authority of the Board that such complex and sensitive issues can be resolved to the benefit of policing and the community as a whole in Northern Ireland.