A week after hearing from victims of IRA bombs made with Semtex donated by Gaddafi, Parliament’s Northern Ireland Affairs Committee heard on Wednesday from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office.
This was a scheduled session and a key part of the committee’s inquiry into the government’s support, or otherwise, for the UK victims of those IRA attacks.
There was also a feel, however, of the courtroom in the European tradition, where judges receive submissions in turn from rivalling factions. Last week, the victims; this week, not the terrorists, but the Foreign Office that those victims believe has failed them. The very nature of the inquiry – the fact it exists at all – suggests that the NI Affairs committee members believe that something is wrong.
This week’s key witness was Tobias Ellwood, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for the FCO. Ellwood spent six years in the army with the Royal Green Jackets, which included serving in…