British Partroopers, Derry, British Army, Major General Robert Ford, Bogside
A priest gives last rites to a boy injured in the Bloody Sunday riots in Derry, N Ireland.30 January 1972 saw one of the most important events in the history of the 'troubles' in Northern Ireland unfold on the streets of Bogside in Derry. Thirteen men and boys were killed and seventeen injured when British Partroopers opened fire on a civil-rights march. The march had dissolved into a riot and after the attempted storming of a barricade, which had been repelled by the use of rubber bullets. Then as Ulster MP Bernadette Mcaliskey was being introduced the shooting started. Afterwards, Major General Robert Ford, who was in command of the British troops, said that he had absolutely no doubts whatsoever that they had been fired upon first, a claim that was bitterly contested. There was even talk that a loyalist gunman may have started shooting at the crowd, a claim that the British hinted might be true. In April the report on the events of Bloody Sunday" was issued. It found that the British troops had been fired upon first, supporting the claims of Ford, but it conceded that some troops 'might have fired recklessly' into the crowd. Republicans refute the claim of the British Army that they were fired upon. The debate continues to this day. "
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