Victim’s brother goes on 7-day fast to protest inaction

A CAMPAIGNER against institutional child sex abuse yesterday declared that he was going on a seven-day fast in protest over inaction against sex abusers and those who concealed it.

Kevin Flanagan, a 57-year-old from Dublin whose brother Mickey was viciously assaulted and injured while at Artane Industrial School, said he was going on a seven-day fast outside the GPO on Dublin’s O’Connell St from this afternoon.

He said the action was being launched to protest against the lack of arrests following the publication of three reports documenting abuse against children: the Ferns Report, the Ryan Report, and the Murphy Report.

His action comes as confusion continued to surround the possible resignation of the Bishop of Limerick Donal Murray.

“What is going on is an absolute joke,” he said. “These three reports, there has not been one person brought before a court.

“All I am listening to is ‘sexual abuse’, and ‘child abuse’ – no one is calling it a crime. It is also a crime to conceal information and the bishops have concealed information.”

Bishop Murray is understood to be staying at the Irish College in Rome and has been there since he left Limerick for the Vatican 11 days ago.

His resignation was widely expected after statements from Cardinal Sean Brady and Archbishop Diarmuid Martin which strongly intimated that Bishop Murray consider his position.

However, there is now speculation no resignation will be accepted until after the publication of Pope Benedict’s Pastoral Letter, which may address the clerical child sex abuse outlined in the Murphy Report, and other bishops may also be lined up for resignations at the same time as Bishop Murray.

The Catholic Communications Office said it had no information regarding Bishop Murray’s stay in Rome.

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