New Lodge six remembered

Relatives gathered to commemorate the anniversary of the murders of six New Lodge men by the British army 32 years ago this week.

Families of the victims who were killed on Saturday and Sunday, February 3 and 4 1973, gathered at the Donore Court memorial garden in the New Lodge to remember those killed.
Jim McCann, Jim Sloan, Tony Campbell, Brendan Maguire, John Loughran and Ambrose Hardy were shot dead at the top of the New Lodge Road and at the corner of Edlingham Street. All the men were unarmed at the time of their murders.
Two years ago a community inquiry held in St Kevin’s Hall and chaired by an international panel of jurists dismissed British army claims that there was a gun battle going on the area at the time the men were killed.
This year’s commemoration was the first time it had been held in the new memorial garden at night.
Gerry Kelly, MLA said the memorial which honours the victims of the conflict in the New Lodge was a “credit to the community”.
“This memorial is used as a place a lot of people go to reflect on the loss of loved ones and victims of the conflict,” he said.
He said calls for sanctions against Sinn Féin, reflected the criminalisation of the nationalist community in the aftermath of the murders of the New Lodge Six.
“In the context of what had happened the memorial and the setting up of the inquiry was a fantastic effort by this community. But it is in the similar context of the current criminalisation of the nationalist community and the so-called IMC report.
“Reports at the time said the victims were killed in a shoot out, but what actually came out of the inquest was the unstinting bravery of the people on the New Lodge at the time in helping the dead and wounded.”

Journalist:: Staff Reporter

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