British ambassador thanks Irish public for show of solidarity after Amess killing

British ambassador thanks Irish public for show of solidarity after Amess killing

A man taking a moment in front of a picture of murdered MP David Amess after the special mass in St Teresa's Church Clarendon St on Thursday. Picture: John Mc Elroy

The British ambassador to Ireland has thanked the Irish public and politicians for the solidarity shown in the wake of the killing of British MP David Amess.

Speaking at a special Mass today, attended by members of the Oireachtas including the Ceann Comhairle and education minister Norma Foley, British ambassador Paul Johnston thanked those in attendance for their "poignant and moving expression of shared grief and shock".

British ambassador Paul Johnston talking to Ceann Comhairle Seán Ó Fearghaíl before the special Mass got under way. Picture: John Mc Elroy
British ambassador Paul Johnston talking to Ceann Comhairle Seán Ó Fearghaíl before the special Mass got under way. Picture: John Mc Elroy

Mr Johnson said the Conservative MP, who died after being stabbed at a meeting in his Essex constituency, had campaigned on many issues relating to women and children.

Among his many other interests, Sir David was an associate member of the British Irish Parliamentary Assembly, and as such, had a direct connection with the Oireachtas and with Ireland," he said.

Citing the tributes paid to the murdered politician, who had served as a member of parliament for almost four decades, he said the messages of sorrow and solidarity expressed in the Dáil and Seanad this week had been "deeply appreciated".

"Sir David was murdered in a shocking act of violence, violating the sanctity of the Church in which he was killed as he conducted the constituency surgery that is so essential to representative democracy," he told the congregation.

"Sir David was a warm and kind man, well-liked by parliamentarians and staff alike. 

"He was, as has been said, a committed Catholic, and his faith sustained him throughout his life and his public service in forming his political convictions, and his concern for the vulnerable.

"He was also a family man, and our condolences go to his wife Julia and to their five children.

They have lost a devoted and loving husband and father, and I'm sure they will be most touched by the gesture of sorrow, solidarity and support that you have collectively shown us all today."

Australian ambassador Gary Gray also attended today's service.

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