Northern Ireland police reopen case into IRA's 1972 no-warning attack on Protestant village
BELFAST, Northern Ireland (AP) -- Detectives will reopen an investigation into one of the Irish Republican Army's worst atrocities, a no-warning attack 30 years ago on the mostly Protestant village of Claudy that killed nine people, police said Tuesday.
The move followed renewed allegations that a deceased Roman Catholic priest, the Rev. Jim Chesney, led the IRA unit responsible for the July 31, 1972, attack. Police said Chief Inspector Pat Steele would lead the effort to identify surviving IRA members responsible.
Catholic church authorities have rejected the allegations against Chesney, who died of cancer in 1980, and had been subject to previous claims of IRA involvement.
However, the area's respected former lawmaker, civil rights campaigner Ivan Cooper, says IRA men have told him the priest was involved in an IRA unit based in the nearby predominantly Catholic town of Dungiven.