The UK Government’s Proposed Amnesty for Legacy Crimes

  • Wills, S. (Participant)
  • O'Connell, R. (Participant)
  • Hamber, B. (Participant)
  • Louise Mallinder (Participant)
  • Daniel Holder (Participant)
  • Anne Cadwallader (Participant)
  • Mary Moreland (Participant)
  • Seán Molloy (Participant)
  • Pablo De Greiff (Participant)

Activity: Participating in or organising an eventOrganising a conference, workshop, ...


Prof Siobhán Wills (TJI Director) organised a webinar on 'The UK Government’s Proposed Amnesty for Legacy Crimes'.

In July 2021, the UK government published Command Paper 498 on Addressing the Legacy of Northern Ireland’s Past, which proposes an unprecedented amnesty for all crimes committed within the context of the Northern Ireland conflict. The paper proposes to end all current and future legacy prosecutions, inquests, and civil actions, as well as all police and Police Ombudsman investigations. The Command Paper 498 proposals have been condemned by all the political parties represented in the Stormont Assembly.

This webinar brought together representatives of civil society, experts on amnesty, human rights law, and peace studies, and the director of Unquiet Graves, a film produced in collaboration with families of some of the victims – to debate the implications of the proposed amnesty and to discuss how civil society, legal experts, and human rights professionals, might work together to address the problems posed by the Command paper.

The first panel focused on legal and institutional perspectives and the second panel focused on voices from civil society. Pablo de Greiff, UN Special Rapporteur on the Promotion of Truth, Justice, Reparation and Guarantees of Non-Recurrence from 2012-2018, gave the closing key-note presentation.

Panel 1: 2.00-2.45 pm

Brandon Hamber, John Hume and Thomas P. O'Neill Chair in Peace, INCORE, Ulster University.
Daniel Holder, Deputy Director, Committee on the Administration of Justice.
Louise Mallinder, Professor, Law School, QUB, and expert on amnesty laws.
Chair – Siobhán Wills, Director of the Transitional Justice Institute, Ulster University.

Panel 2: 2.45-3.30 pm

Anne Cadwallader, case worker, Pat Finucane Centre; author of ‘Lethal Allies’ (2013).
Mary Moreland, Member of the Victims and Survivors Forum of the Commission for Victims and Survivors, and chairperson of the War Widows Association from 2017-2020.
Sean Murray, director of the documentary film Unquiet Graves, (2018 75 mins) produced with groups campaigning for justice on behalf of some of the victims’ families.
Chair - Rory O'Connell, Research Director (Law), Ulster University.

Closing Keynote: 3.30-4.00 pm
Pablo de Greiff, former UN Special Rapporteur on the Promotion of Truth, Justice, Reparation and Guarantees of Non-Recurrence.
Chair - Siobhán Wills
Period24 Nov 2021
Event typeConference