Readers like you keep news free for everyone.

More than 5,000 readers have already pitched in to keep free access to The Journal.

For the price of one cup of coffee each week you can help keep paywalls away.

Support us today
Not now
Thursday 1 June 2023 Dublin: 14°C
Photocall Ireland Former President of the District Court Peter Smithwick at The Smithwick Tribunal of Inquiry
# Smithwick Tribunal
First public hearing for Smithwick Tribunal
The tribunal was established in 2005 to examine claims of garda collusion in the fatal shootings of two RUC Superintendents in 1989.

THE SMITHWICK TRIBUNAL will hold its first public hearing in more than four years this morning.

The tribunal was set up in 2005 to examine claims that members of the Garda Siochána or other employees of the State colluded in the fatal shootings of RUC Superintendents Harry Breen and Robert Buchanan on 20 March 1989.

The Tribunal is led by Mr Justice Peter Smithwick.

On 20 March 1989, the two RUC Superintendents travelled to Dundalk Garda Station for a scheduled meeting with a senior Garda officer. On their way back they were ambushed and killed in County Armagh.

The Provisional IRA claimed responsibility for their murders.

The two murders were examined by Judge Cory who was appointed to investigate allegations of collusion between Irish and British security forces and paramilitaries in a number of instances including the deaths of these two men.

The findings of his investigation, including the statement of a man who alleged that a member of the gardaí told the Provisional IRA that the two officers were in Dundalk Garda Station, led the Judge to conclude there should be a public inquiry conducted by an independent tribunal.

At today’s hearing, RTE reports that applications will be made for legal representation, which should provide some information on the tribunal’s focus in advance of the hearing of evidence in three weeks’ time.