Sinn Fein MP Barry McElduff resigns following Kingsmill controversy

Sinn Fein MP Barry McElduff resigns following Kingsmill controversy

A Sinn Fein MP who posted a video of himself balancing a loaf of bread on his head on the anniversary of the Kingsmill massacre today resigned from the Commons.

McElduff announced his resignation this morning after informing the Leader of Sinn Féin Michelle O'Neill of his intention last night.

Barry McElduff stood down as MP for West Tyrone, apologising and saying he had caused "deep and unnecessary hurt" to the victims' families.

Mr McElduff reiterated his insistence that he had not meant the video as a reference to the sectarian murders of 10 protestant workmen by republican paramilitaries near the south Armagh village of Kingsmill in 1976.

Mr McElduff said he was resigning as a result of the controversy surrounding the video he posted on Twitter.

Have deleted video post.

"His actions caused huge offence and enormous hurt", Mr Eastwood said.

Mr Irwin described teh video as "despicable" and said SF's sanction against Mr McElduff was "lenient".

The situation was exacerbated on Wednesday when a number of unionist politicians retweeted a graphic satirical cartoon that portrayed the controversy over Mr McElduff by depicting the aftermath of the Kingsmill outrage, with blood running from a bullet-riddled van.

"And in recognition of the controversy that it has sparked over the last week Barry has now chose to resign so he is not barrier toward reconciliation and I accept that as the best way forward".

She said: "Barry recognises that this controversy and his continuing role in public office is compounding the distress to the victims of Kingsmill, and again offers his profound apology to those families and to the wider victims community".

"Barry is paid through the party resources and he will continue to be paid through the party resources", she said.

Previously, the party suspended him for tree months following widespread condemnation of the video.

Colin Worton revealed he was sickened and angry at McElduff's reaction.

DUP leader and former First Minister Arlene Foster said it was the "right decision".

Ten workmen were killed on January 1976 and numerous relatives of those who were killed found the video distasteful and upsetting.

He added: "The three months was not going to be enough to reach out to Unionists".

The controversial post had further disrupted efforts to restore a power-sharing executive to the Northern Ireland Assembly.

Dr Farry said events of the last 10 days "should serve to show the requirement to prioritise the needs of victims here", and added: "The most important thing throughout this entire sorry episode has been the thoughts and feelings of victims and survivors". Sinn Fein members elected to Britain's Parliament refuse to take up their seats, as they don't recognize its jurisdiction over Northern Ireland.

"Big implications and serious questions for Sinn Fein leadership".

His brother Kenneth was one of the ten people killed during the IRA attack on January 5, 1976.

"I watched all my friends being murdered, my 19-year-old apprentice crying for his mother, and then to watch on Friday a man standing and mocking their deaths, if he was a man of principle he would walk", he said.

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