Parents of Paul Quinn to attend today's Dáil

The mother and father of murdered Paul Quinn will be in the Dáil today as TDs return to the chamber for the first time in two weeks.
Parents of Paul Quinn to attend today's Dáil

The mother and father of murdered Paul Quinn will be in the Dáil today as TDs return to the chamber for the first time in two weeks.

Breege and Steven Quinn have campaigned on behalf of their son since his murder in 2007.

They will make a statement to the media at noon and meet with various political parties to discuss their sons' case.

Mr Quinn (21) from Cullyhanna in south Armagh was beaten to death by a gang of around a dozen men in a farm shed on the border near Castleblayney, Co Monaghan.

Mr and Mrs Quinn are travelling to the Dáil where they say they hope to meet “all the political parties except Sinn Fein”, in a visit organised by the SDLP.

His family blame members of the IRA, but Sinn Féin has long denied republican involvement.

A month after the murder, the north’s finance minister Sinn Féin's Conor Murphy, claimed Mr Quinn was involved in “smuggling and criminality”.

Mr Murphy has since publicly apologised for comments made 13 years ago.

However, Mr Quinn's mother remains unsatisfied with Sinn Féin's response and has called on Mr Murphy to contact the PSNI with any information he has on the murder and to publicly state her son was not a criminal.

Mrs Quinn has previously said she was left disappointed after a phone call with Mary Lou McDonald when the party leader did not commit to telling Mr Murphy to publicly say so and assured the public she would not remove him from the party or his senior role in Stormont.

Breege Quinn says she is not interested in meeting Sinn Féin.

“Unless they come to me and say Conor Murphy is willing to admit Paul was not a criminal and go to the PSNI, then I won’t be meeting with Sinn Féin,” she said.

I’ll be saying the same in my statement in the Dáil and thanking all the people who sent us beautiful cards and letters over the last six weeks.

“This is not about the election, I’ve been in the Dáil before during our campaign and I’ll be there to answer questions like we always have done.”

The presence of the Quinn family is likely to heap pressure on Sinn Féin as the party continues its efforts to form a government after its historic election and representatives return to the chamber for a debate.

The party met with Solidarity-People Before Profit and Independents for Change on Wednesday, as Fine Gael met with Fianna Fáil.

Sinn Féin's Pearse Doherty labelled Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael's meeting as an attempt to "drag out" the government formation process to wear the public down, clearing the way for a coalition.

"The farce of pretending that they are not engaged in negotiations is insulting and will fool nobody," he said.

"They want to get back into power to try and block the change that people voted for but they will not succeed.

With so many challenges facing people, there is no excuse for unnecessary delay.

Gardaí have followed more than 2,000 lines of inquiry and taken over 700 statements from people as part of their 13-year investigation into the murder of Paul Quinn.

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