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Last Updated: Tuesday, 21 March 2006, 20:44 GMT
Finucane probe to go ahead: Ahern
Pat Finucane
Mr Finucane, 39, was shot dead in 1989
The UK government is to go ahead with a restricted inquiry into Pat Finucane's murder, despite the Irish government's opposition, Bertie Ahern has said.

The taoiseach told the Dail that Northern Ireland Secretary Peter Hain is seeking a judge to head the inquiry.

However, Mr Ahern said this was proving difficult as the international legal community has advised its members against accepting the position.

Mr Finucane, a Belfast solicitor, was shot dead by the UDA in 1989.

Earlier this month, the Dail - the Irish parliament - called for a full public inquiry into the murder.

The all-party motion called for the British government to hold "a full, independent, public judicial inquiry".

Judge Peter Cory, the retired Canadian judge who investigated several controversial NI murders, also recommended a full, public inquiry.

The British government is to carry out the inquiry under the Inquiries act, which the Finucane family argues cannot establish the truth.

However, the British government has said the inquiry will be public to "the extent possible" and will have full powers to require the production of all the relevant documents and to compel witnesses to attend.


Mr Ahern told the Dail: "Secretary of State Peter Hain told me on Thursday that he was going ahead with his inquiry and that they are seeking a venue.

"I am told they have a venue for the autumn.

"They are also seeking a judge. I understand from international connections that they are having great difficulty getting a judge."

Mr Ahern said he did not believe the inquiry would satisfy anyone.

"It will take five years to do it and it will cost 50m euro, nobody will ever believe it, at least none of the people we must try to represent," he said.

"Perhaps some people in the United Kingdom will believe it, although I have my doubts about that too, especially where the legal profession is concerned."

Finucane family welcome Dail move
09 Mar 06 |  Northern Ireland
Cory criticises inquiry 'changes'
22 Feb 06 |  Northern Ireland
Finucanes angry after Hain talks
07 Feb 06 |  Northern Ireland

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