News that the Police Service of Northern Ireland will finally investigate a clandestine unit of the British army that murdered civilians in the north of Ireland in the early 70s has been labelled as cynical window-dressing by the family of one of the victims.

 

Young mother, Jean Smyth-Campbell, was murdered in June 1972 and the family were informed that she was killed by Republicans.

 

Nevertheless, secret archives released by Paper Trail to the family proved that Jean was killed by the British army. A covert Special Force unit called the Military Reaction Force (MRF) is now in the frame for her murder.

 

The Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) and the Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) are implicated in the cover-up of her murder.

 

Jean’s family have dragged the state and its police forces to court in what will be a history-making case for human rights. They were finally due to be heard this Friday and the police were running scared.

 

Therefore it is little surprise that Jean’s family consider the PSNI’s belated decision to investigate MRF murders. The unit set up by the PSNI, the Legacy Investigation Branch, is staffed by former members of the the RUC.

 

Human rights organisations have already warned that the LIB is not fit for purpose or Article 2 compliant.

 

The PSNI has already proved that its DNA is inextricably linked with that of the RUC, and is more interested in defending the reputation of the RUC rather than defending the basic human rights of victims and their families.

 

Jean’s family have rightly lambasted the PSNI’s belated decision to investigate as cynical and have dismissed it as window-dressing.

 

An independent and transparent investigation is required straight away and not some sneering manoeuvre by the police who will no doubthave the gall to defend the indefensible and maintain that Jean was not murdered by state forces. The organisation has form in the denial of police cover-up too but archives are difficult to deny.

 

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