Docklands bomb victims upset over IRA immunity letters
Victims of the IRA bomb in Canary Wharf have reacted angrily to reports that immunity had been promised to terrorist suspects.
It was believed up to 187 republicans were sent letters giving pardons. The news led to Northern Ireland's first minister Peter Robinson to threaten to resign after he claimed to be kept in the dark over the deal.
And those affected by the Docklands bomb in South Quay in 1996 were angry at the precedent made by the letters.
Jonathan Ganesh, president of the Docklands Victims Association, said: "Our members are very upset and concerned. What sort of message does it send to other terrorist organisations across the world such as Al Qaeda, Boko Haram and Al-Shabaab?
"Does it mean those groups and individuals who carry out atrocity can one day say 'we want a letter that gives us immunity as well'.
"We have to look at this very carefully and I'm pleased the Prime Minister has appointed a judge to hold an inquiry. We hope it's a thorough inquiry."
Hamida Bashir, whose son Inam was one of two people killed in the Canary Wharf blast 18 years ago, added: "I'm heartbroken to find out that letters have been issued that give immunity to terrorists who murder innocent children. I'm so sad for all the mothers who lost their children."
Speaking after an angry response to uncovering of the letters, which were sent in 1998 as part of the peace deal, Cameron said a report from the inquiry would be finished by the end of May.
"There was never any amnesty or guarantee of immunity for anyone and there isn't now," Cameron said. "It is right to get to the bottom of what happened."