Bloody Sunday march in Brooklyn - Protesters demand justice for Irish activists

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With today’s fiscal crisis looming over everyone’s heads, we’re all having our fair share of troubles.

But for the members of the Bay Ridge Irish American Action Association, “the Troubles” have a different meaning altogether.

It recalls the time in 1972 when 14 Irish Catholic civil rights activists were gunned down by the British army — a horrible moment in history that will be remembered this weekend at an annual Bloody Sunday remembrance march.

Marchers will commemorate the 37th anniversary of the massacre in Derry, Northern Ireland this Sunday, February 9, beginning at 12:30 p.m.

Bearing bone white crosses of the slain protestors, Association members will march from the corner of 58th Street and Fourth Avenue to Our Lady of Perpetual Help Basilica at the corner of 60th Street and Fifth Avenue for a 1 p.m. mass. A reception will be held later at the Irish Haven, 5721 Fourth Avenue.

Bloody Sunday recalls the events that took place in Derry Ireland on January 30, 1972, when British troops opened fire on 20,000 peace protestors seeking equality for an oppressed Catholic minority. Fourteen people were killed under a hail of bullets, historians recall.

Participants usually spend the march remembering those who were lost, pray for a lasting peace and celebrate recent positive developments.

Mourners will also be acknowledging the re-opening of the Saville Inquiry, which was charged with investigating the bloodbath.

But, since its inception in 1998, the Saville Inquiry has been mired in controversy and has dragged on without anyone held accountable, protestors explained.

To this day, the British government has never apologized to the relatives of those killed on Bloody Sunday.

“We will march and pray until justice is finally done for those innocents murdered in 1972,” said Mary Nolan, director of the Bloody Sunday march committee. “Reconciling the worst injustices committed by Britain during the Troubles is necessary to build a future based on equality, justice and mutual respect.”

Anyone wishing to know more about Sunday’s march can contact Nolan at (718) 833-3405.

Updated 3:32 pm, October 19, 2011
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