Tag Archives: 27th May

28th May – Deaths & Events in Northern Ireland Troubles

Key Events & Deaths on this day in Northern Ireland Troubles

28th May

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Wednesday 28 August 1968

Gerry Fitt, then an MP, tabled a House of Commons motion, which was signed by 60 Labour Party backbenchers, which criticised RUC action in Dungannon on 24 August 1968 and demanded that:

“citizens of Northern Ireland should be allowed the same rights of peaceful demonstration as those in other parts of the United Kingdom”.

Thursday 28 May 1970 Arms Trial Began

Charles Haughey and Neil Blaney, both former Irish government ministers, together with two other men James Kelly (Captain), then an Irish Army Intelligence Officer, and John Kelly, a Belfast Republican, were charged in a Dublin court with conspiracy to illegally import arms for use by the Irish Republican Army (IRA).

It was alleged that the arms were to be smuggled to the IRA in Northern Ireland. The men denied any involvement in the affair.

[This was the first day of the ‘Arms Trial’. Blaney was found not guilty on 2 July 1970, Haughey and the others were found not guilty on 23 October 1970.

Sunday 28 February 1971

A British soldier died in Derry as a result of inhaling chemicals from fire extinguisers that were used to put out a fire inside the vehicle he was travelling in. The vehicle had been attacked with petrol bombs.

Sunday 28 May 1972

Eight people were killed when an Irish Republican Army (IRA) bomb prematurely exploded outside a house in Anderson Street, Short Strand, Belfast. Four of those killed were members of the IRA.

Tuesday 28 May 1974

Executive Collapsed, Direct Rule Resumed

Day 14 of the UWC strike

The crisis came to a head. Brian Faulkner resigned as Chief Executive following a refusal by Merlyn Rees, then Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, to meet with representatives from the Ulster Workers’ Council (UWC).

Faulkner’s Unionist colleagues also resigned. This effectively marked the end of the Northern Ireland Executive.

A large demonstration of farmers in tractors blocked the entrance to the Stormont parliament buildings and also much of the Upper Newtownards Road. News of the collapse of the Northern Ireland Executive spread to the protestors. Celebrations took place in Protestant areas across the region.

[Public Records 1974 – Released 1 January 2005: Telegram from General Idi Amin Dada, then President of the Republic of Uganda, to Harold Wilson, then British Prime Minister. Amin offers to host a conference in Uganda where representives of the conflict in Northern Ireland could meet.]

Friday 28 May 1976

David Robinson & Paul Hamill

A Catholic and a Protestant civilian were killed in a bomb attack on the Club Bar, University Road, Belfast. The attack was carried out by Loyalist paramilitaries.

Thursday 28 May 1981

Charles Maguire and George McBrearty

Charles Maguire (20) and George McBrearty (24), both members of the IRA, were shot dead as they approached a car on the Lone Moor Road in Derry.

The car contained undercover members of the British Army.

Mervyn Robinson

A member of the RUC was shot dead by the IRA near Bessbrook, County Armagh.

Martin Hurson, an Irish Republican Army (IRA) prisoner in the Maze Prison, joined the hunger strike to replace Brendan McLaughlin who had been taken off the strike on 26 May 1981.

Margaret Thatcher, then British Prime Minister, paid a visit to Northern Ireland and made a statement indicating the British government’s belief that the hunger strike was the ‘last card’ of the IRA.

Monday 28 May 1990

Peter Brooke, then Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, met with Charles Haughey, then Taoiseach (Irish Prime Minister), and Gerry Collins, then Minister of Foreign Affairs.

Sunday 28 May 1995

There was serious rioting on the Shankill Road, west Belfast. During the disturbances 17 Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) officers were injured.

A shot was also fired at the RUC.

Tuesday 28 May 1996

Dick Spring, then Tánaiste (deputy Irish Prime Minister and Minister for Foreign Affairs), met Patrick Mayhew, then Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, in Dublin after which they announced that George Mitchell, a former United States Senator, should play a key role in the proposed all-party talks.

Wednesday 28 May 1997

The civil liberties group Human Rights Watch published a report that was highly critical of the actions of the Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) during the events surrounding Drumcree in July 1996.

The report claimed that the RUC had used excessive force, been indiscriminate in its use of plastic bullets, failed to remove illegal roadblocks manned by the Orange Order and Loyalists, and had abandoned its “traditional policing function in some areas”.

Marjorie (Mo) Mowlam, then Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, held a meeting with representatives of the Apprentice Boys of Derry (ABD), the Grand Orange Lodge, Ballynafeigh Orangemen, and the Ulster Civil Rights group.

The meeting was called to discuss the forthcoming ‘marching season’. John Bruton, then Taoiseach (Irish Prime Minister), briefed the relatives of those killed on ‘Bloody Sunday’ on a report being prepared by the Irish government on the killings on 30 January 1972. Bruton said that a “grave injustice” had been done to the families of the dead.

[The report contained new information on events of the day and was eventually presented to the British government.]

Thursday 28 May 1998

Martin McGuinness, then Vice-President of Sinn Féin (SF), held a meeting with Marjorie (Mo) Mowlam, then Secretary of State for Northern Ireland.

Following the meeting McGuinness warned against “falling into the trap of trying to make decommissioning the most important item on the agenda”. A concert featuring Elton John was held in the grounds of Stormont.

Friday 28 May 1999

Body of One of the ‘Disappeared’ Recovered

The body of Eamon Molloy, one of the ‘disappeared’ who had been missing since 1975, was found above ground in a new coffin in a cemetery in County Louth, Republic of Ireland.

Garda Síochána (the Irish police) went to the site following information given by the Irish Republican Army (IRA) to the Independent Commission for the Location of Victims’ Remains (ICLVR). The IRA passed on information about the location of nine bodies at six sites in four counties in the Republic of Ireland.

The ICLVR was established jointly by Marjorie (Mo) Mowlam, then Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, and Mr O’Donoghue, then Minister for Justice in the Republic of Ireland.

The discovery marked the beginning of digging at a number of locations in Counties Louth, Monaghan, Meath, and Wicklow (all in the Republic of Ireland).

see The Disappeared

There was a pipe-bomb attack on the home of a Catholic family in Armagh. The device broke a window and caused minor damage to the house; the family escaped unharmed. The attacked was carried out by Loyalist paramilitaries.

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Remembering all innocent victims of the Troubles

Today is the anniversary of the death of the following people killed as a results of the conflict in Northern Ireland

“To live in hearts we leave behind is not to die

– Thomas Campbell

To the innocent on the list – Your memory will live forever

– To the Paramilitaries –

There are many things worth living for, a few things worth dying for, but nothing worth killing for.

16  People lost their lives on the 28th   between 1972 – 1986

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28 May 1972


James Teer   (21)

Catholic
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF)
Shot from passing car while walking along Springfield Road, Belfast

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28 May 1972
Joseph Fitzsimmons  (17)

Catholic
Status: Irish Republican Army (IRA),

Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
Died in premature bomb explosion in house, Anderson Street, Short Strand, Belfast.

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28 May 1972
John McIlhone   (17)

Catholic
Status: Irish Republican Army (IRA),

Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
Died in premature bomb explosion in house, Anderson Street, Short Strand, Belfast.

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28 May 1972
Edward McDonnell   (29)

Catholic
Status: Irish Republican Army (IRA),

Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
Died in premature bomb explosion in house, Anderson Street, Short Strand, Belfast.

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28 May 1972
Martin Engelen  (19)

Catholic
Status: Irish Republican Army (IRA),

Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
Died in premature bomb explosion in house, Anderson Street, Short Strand, Belfast.

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28 May 1972
Henry Crawford  (39)

Catholic
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
Died in premature bomb explosion in house, Anderson Street, Short Strand, Belfast.

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28 May 1972
Mary Clarke   (27)

Catholic
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
Died in premature bomb explosion in house, Anderson Street, Short Strand, Belfast

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28 May 1972
John Nugent   (31)

Catholic
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
Died in premature bomb explosion in house, Anderson Street, Short Strand, Belfast.

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28 May 1972
Geraldine McMahon  (17)

Catholic
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
Died in premature bomb explosion in house, Anderson Street, Short Strand, Belfast.

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28 May 1976


David Robinson   (23)

Protestant
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: non-specific Loyalist group (LOY)
Killed in bomb attack on Club Bar, University Road, Belfast.

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28 May 1976


Paul Hamill   (21)

Catholic
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: non-specific Loyalist group (LOY)
Killed in bomb attack on Club Bar, University Road, Belfast

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28 May 1981


Mervyn Robinson  (47)

Protestant
Status: Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC),

Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
Off duty. Shot outside Wayside Inn, Whitecross, near Bessbrook, County Armagh.

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28 May 1981


Charles Maguire   (20)

Catholic
Status: Irish Republican Army (IRA),

Killed by: British Army (BA)
Shot by undercover British Army (BA) members, as he approached stationary car, Lone Moor Road, Creggan, Derry.

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28 May 1981


George McBrearty  (24)

Catholic
Status: Irish Republican Army (IRA),

Killed by: British Army (BA)
Shot by undercover British Army (BA) members, as he approached stationary car, Lone Moor Road, Creggan, Derry.

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28 May 1985


Gary Smith   (19)

Protestant
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) applicant. Shot as he parked his car Millfield, Belfast.

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28 May 1986


Brian Brown  (37)

Protestant
Status: Ulster Defence Regiment (UDR),

Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
Killed by remote controlled bomb hidden in garage, detonated when Ulster Defence Regiment (UDR) foot patrol approached, Newry Road, Kilkeel, County Down.

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27th May – Deaths & Events in Northern Ireland Troubles

Key Events & Deaths on this day in Northern Ireland Troubles

27th May

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Tuesday 27 August 1968

The Derry Housing Action Committee (DHAC) organised another protest in the Guildhall’s council chamber. Immediately after the protest Eamon Melaugh phoned the Northern Ireland Civil Rights Association (NICRA) and invited them to organise a march in Derry.

Monday 27 May 1974

Day 13 of the UWC strike

Gas supplies to Belfast and other outlying districts were affected by a drop in pressure and a warning was issued that consumers should switch off their supply at the mains.

The British Army took charge of 21 petrol stations throughout Northern Ireland. These petrol stations were to supply petrol to essential users who could obtain a permit from the Ministry of Commerce.

The Ulster Workers’ Council (UWC) retaliated following the take over of the petrol stations. The UWC announced that the British Army would have to undertake the supply of all essential services including basics such as bread and milk. There was a call issued for workers to stop their assistance in the provision of essential services.

The UWC also stated that the Ballylumford power station, County Antrim, would close at midnight.

[Public Records 1974 – Released 1 January 2005: Memo from Merlyn Rees, then Secretary of Sate for Northern Ireland, to Harold Wilson, then British Prime Minister. In the memo Rees sets out ‘The Short-term Possibilities’ for Northern Ireland and the Executive.] [ Sunningdale; Ulster Workers’ Council Strike. ]

Sunday 27 May 1990

In a gun attack in Roermond, Netherlands, the Irish Republican Army (IRA) shot and killed two Australian lawyers on holiday.

It was claimed that the men were mistaken for off-duty British Army soldiers. [It was believed that the killings led to a drop in support for the IRA in Australia.]

Thursday 27 May 1993

Queen Meets President Mary Robinson, then President of the Republic of Ireland, travelled to London to attend a meeting with Queen Elizabeth at Buckingham Palace.

[The meeting was the first official contact between an Irish president and a British monarch.]

Michael Ancram replaced Jeremy Hanley at the Northern Ireland Office (NIO) to become the Political Development Minister.

Wednesday 27 May 1998

In the aftermath of the Good Friday Agreement the issue of the ‘decommissioning’ of paramilitary weapons began to dominate the political agenda.

[Decommissioning was to prove a stumbling block to the full implementation of the Agreement and the issue was still causing problems in May 2000.]

Thursday 27 May 1999

Leaders of the Presbyterian Church criticised the Orange Order in Portadown, County Armagh, for failing to commend the Christian faith during the Drumcree parade dispute.

Legislation was passed at Westminster and the Oireachtas which guaranteed immunity from prosecution for anyone providing information on the location of the bodies of the ‘disappeared’.

Saturday 27 May 2000

UUC Support Trimble

There was a meeting of the Ulster Unionist Council (UUC), the policy-making body of the Ulster Unionist Party (UUP).

David Trimble, then leader of the UUP, won a motion at the meeting which allowed him to re-enter the power-sharing Executive with Sinn Féin (SF).

The motion was on whether to accept the IRA offer on disarmament as a basis for the return to Stormont. Of the members present 459 voted in favour of a return to Stormont while 403 voted against.

[At a press conference following the UUC meeting it seemed that Trimble set out to offend Sinn Féin by remarking that the party had still to be politically “house-trained”.]

 

Sunday 27 May 2001

Stephen Manners (40), an ex-member of the Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF), was shot dead while in Jimmy Mac’s Bar, North Street, Newtownards, County Down.

[It was believed that Loyalist paramilitaries carried out the killing although no organisations claimed responsibility.]

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Remembering all innocent victims of the Troubles

Today is the anniversary of the death of the following people killed as a results of the conflict in Northern Ireland

“To live in hearts we leave behind is not to die

– Thomas Campbell

To the innocent on the list – Your memory will live forever

– To the Paramilitaries –

There are many things worth living for, a few things worth dying for, but nothing worth killing for.

10 People lost their lives on the 27th  May between 1972 – 2001

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27 May 1972
Gerard Duddy  (20)

Catholic
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: non-specific Loyalist group (LOY)
Shot while walking at the junction of Finaghy Road North and Andersonstown Road, Andersonstown, Belfast.

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27 May 1973


Margaret Hrykiewicz   (24)

Catholic
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: non-specific Loyalist group (LOY)
Found stabbed to death on waste ground, Adela Street, off Antrim Road, Belfast

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27 May 1975
Patrick O’Reilly  (52)

Catholic
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF)
Shot while driving along road at Scallen, near Irvinestown, County Fermanagh.

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27 May 1975
Gerard  McClenaghan  (36)

Catholic
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF)
Died nearly three months after being injured during gun and bomb attack on Bush Bar, Leeson Street, Lower Falls, Belfast. He was wounded on 4 March 1975.

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27 May 1976


Gerard Masterson   (34)

Catholic
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: non-specific Loyalist group (LOY)
Shot at his home, Allworthy Avenue, off Antrim Road, Belfast.

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27 May 1978


Collette Brady (26)

Catholic
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: Ulster Defence Association (UDA)
Shot while walking along Cavehill Road, Belfast.

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27 May 1990
Stephen Melrose   (24)

nfNIE
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
Australian national. Shot shortly after getting out of car, Town Square, Roermond, Netherlands. Assumed to be an off duty British Army (BA) member.

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27 May 1990
Nicholas Spanos  (28)

nfNIE
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
Australian national. Shot shortly after getting out of car, Town Square, Roermond, Netherlands. Assumed to be an off duty British Army (BA) member.

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27 May 1991


Edward Spence   (26)

Protestant
Status: Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC),

Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
Died two days after being shot while on Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) foot patrol, Lower Crescent, off University Road, Belfast

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27 May 2001
Stephen Manners   (40)

Protestant
Status: ex-Ulster Volunteer Force (xUVF),

Killed by: non-specific Loyalist group (LOY)
Shot while in Jimmy Mac’s Bar, North Street, Newtownards, County Down.

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