An IRA bomber and a victim's daughter
Oct 19, 2009
On Tuesday, former Irish Republican Army (IRA) activist Pat Magee, who was convicted of the Brighton bombings in 1984, met Jo Berry, daughter of Sir Anthony Berry, one of the five victims killed in the blast.
Though Magee had been given eight life sentences, he was freed in 1999 under the negotiated terms of the Good Friday Agreement of 1999. Magee's conviction was based on his planning of the bomb and for attempting to kill British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, who was attending a conference at the Grand Hotel in Brighton (above), where the bomb was planted.
Magee and Berry met at the House of Commons, a high profile meeting place, hosted by The Forgiveness Project and the All Party Parliamentary Group on Conflict Issues. The intention of the meeting was to open up a dialogue related to the blast. What took place is fascinating in light of what the ex-offender said publicly and also what the victim's daughter said. Did this public meeting bring healing of any kind to the victims or their family members? Is this an example of restorative justice at work?
For more about this event read the following articles, including coverage by The Times, a generic wire story posted by CNN News, and an article written before the event by The Forgiveness Project also printed by The Times. Each article is interesting in what is covered, what is not covered, and what is emphasized.