O'Dea vows to properly investigate death of army private

Defence Minister Willie O'Dea has vowed to properly investigate the death of a 20-year-old Irish soldier in Lebanon seven years ago.

Mr O'Dea made the promise today after publishing an independent review which found that the original investigation into the death was ineffective.

Private Kevin Barrett died in 1999 while serving as a UN peacekeeper in Lebanon.

He was found dead from a single gunshot would to the head from his own rifle.

Several inquiries have concluded that the death was accidental, but the latest review says this conclusion was based on incomplete evidence.

Mr O'Dea said today that the Gardaí would be reviewing files on the matter as early as this week to see what contribution they can make to a new investigation, while he would be talking to the Barrett family before deciding whether to establish a military court of inquiry.


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