Page last updated at 18:24 GMT, Wednesday, 3 November 2010

MP questions accuracy of 'some' Saville evidence

Tory MP and chairman of the Northern Ireland Select Committee Laurence Robertson has called into question the accuracy of "some of the evidence given" to the Saville Inquiry.

During a Commons debate on the inquiry's report, which was published twelve years after the inquiry began, he told MPs that memories would have faded with the passage of time.

It was also difficult to appreciate the context in which the decisions taken by the Army were made, he said.

He added: "I am in no way trying to suggest that what the soldiers did who were accused was right in any way.

"I'm not in any way trying to play down or underestimate the pain which the families must have felt.

"But I think there is an issue here. I think it is very difficult to look back so far, partly, as I say, because memories fade and partly because here we are, in the safety of our lives, judging the actions of people who must have been extremely frightened.

"I don't know how I would have felt in that situation and it is very, very difficult to actually correctly assess that."

DUP MP Gregory Campbell said the inquiry did not take proper account of the situation in Northern Ireland at the time.

"The truth was that murder, mayhem and terror were rife," the MP for East Londonderry said.

Watch the opening part of the debate here.


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