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PM rejects calls for Finucane inquiry

PM rejects calls for Finucane inquiry

David Cameron today said there was "shocking" collusion in the murder of Pat Finucane, but he rejected calls from the victim's family and Labour for a public inquiry.

Mr Finucane's widow Geraldine reacted angrily to the report from lawyer Desmond de Silva, calling it "a whitewash".

“The dirt has been swept under the carpet without any serious attempt to lift the lid on what happened... This report is a sham; this report is a whitewash... most of all, most hurtful and insulting of all, this report is not the truth,” she told a press conference this afternoon.

The De Silva review found that state agents had passed the name of Mr Finucane to paramilitary forces, but concluded there was no "overarching state conspiracy" behind the murder. You can read the full report here.

Earlier the Prime Minister told MPs Sir Desmond's review had found that Royal Ulster Constabulary officers colluded to help murder Mr Finucane, who was shot dead at his home by the Ulster Freedom Fighters in February 1989.

Read a full rundown of the statement and debate from our liveblog.

Mr Cameron said today: "This report makes extremely difficult reading. There was not an overarching state conspiracy... but was shocking state collusion."

While Mr Finucane's family have claimed the review process was "flawed", and demanded a full public inquiry, Mr Cameron said: "I do respectfully disagree with them that a public inquiry would provide a fuller picture."

However, Ed Miliband backed the calls, saying that failing to hold an inquiry was "at odds with agreements that were a central part of the peace process".

Northern Irish politicans also called for a more comprehensive process to look into the full raft of murders. SDLP leader Alasdair McDonnell said he wanted to see a "truth process," adding that other families were "no nearer the truth about the deaths of their loved ones".

Mr Finucane's son, John, this morning accused the Prime Minister of reneging on a promise to set up an inquiry, and described the murder as a "fundamental attack on democracy".

"I rather flippantly announced last year that I thought it would have been easier if my father’s phone had been hacked, rather than being killed," he told the Today programme.

Chief Constable of the Police Service of Northern Ireland Matt Baggott said it was important to see the report's findings in context.

He said Mr De Silva had been “very careful to talk about the context of those awful years, the degree of murder, misery that was going on, and also the bravery and sacrifice of so many who stood with great integrity to keep people safe."

"I think Sir Desmond himself was very clear to put things properly in context and it’s right that we do that,” he added.

Green Box: PM rejects calls for Finucane inquiryClick to open

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