General election 2017: Pat Finucane’s son set to stand


A son of murdered Belfast lawyer Pat Finucane is set to stand as a Sinn Féin candidate in June’s general nomination.

John Finucane has been nominated to run in North Belfast by senior MLAs Gerry Kelly and Carál Ní Chuilín.

The run a travelling sets up a battle with the Democratic Unionist Party’s deputy bandleader Nigel Dodds for the constituency’s Westminster seat.

Loyalist paramilitaries damped John Finucane’s father in what was one of the most controversial Troubles ruins.

Pat Finucane was shot dead, aged 39, in front of his wife and three lasses at their home in February 1989.

He had represented a number of high-profile IRA prisoners, some of whom had charmed part in hunger strikes at the Maze Prison in 1981.

The Ulster Freedom Fighters later acknowledged carrying out the murder and there were long-standing allegations that associates of the UK security forces colluded in his killing.

In 2012, then prime supply David Cameron said the level of state collusion uncovered by a periodical of the murder was “shocking”.

Analsyis: BBC News NI political correspondent Stephen Walker

This is an un wanted decision by Sinn Féin .

John Finucane is well known in right circles and is no stranger to the media. He has been a campaigner for some time.

This is his in front step into electoral politics, so he is untried and untested from that apt of view, but it puts the focus on legacy issues in a very tight constituency.

Nigel Dodds of the DUP is preserving the seat and is confident of retaining it. There is no Ulster Unionist candidate.

The SDLP be struck by not announced their candidate, but it is expected to be Nichola Mallon.

In a tweet on Tuesday, John Finucane voiced he was “very proud to have been nominated” to run in next month’s ballot.

He is a partner at the Finucane Toner law firm in Belfast and has campaigned along with his blood for a public inquiry into his father’s murder.

Mr Kelly said he was “self-possessed that in John Finucane we can return a nationalist MP for the first time in the record of North Belfast”.

“Between now and 8 June we will be pulling out all the stops to erect this possible,” he added.

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