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Ballymurphy Massacre Inquest Witness refuses to return to Ballymurphy court hearing

THERE was drama at the Ballymuphy inquiry today when a civilian witness refused to return to the court to continue giving evidence after claiming to have seen a gunman shot dead by British troops.

The witness, known by the codename C3, left the Belfast hearing after relatives poured scorn on his testimony, in which he claimed to have seen eight armed men in the Ballymurphy area at the time of the shootings.

He said the gunmen had walked across waste ground and one collapsed after being hit by a British bullet.

As a priest went to help the wounded man, C3 claimed to see him lift up a rifle when a British paratrooper said: “I’ve identified a gunman” and shot him.

Two men were killed in the Ballymurphy area on that day: Catholic priest Father Hugh Mullan and 19-year-old Frank Quinn.

Families of the victims insist that their loved ones were unarmed, a contention that is corroborated by most witnesses.

David Voyle, whose grandmother Joan Connolly died in the three-day killing spree by British soldiers in August 1971, said: “The barrister for Father Mullan … pointed out he would have needed X-ray vision  because of the houses/flats blocking his view.

“Walter Mitty will never be dead while C3 is alive.”

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