'Long time' before any government looks at legacy again, if bill does not pass, says Lord Caine

The Parliamentary Under Secretary of State has said that he fears if a controversial Legacy bill does not pass, it will be a "very long time" before any government looks at the issue of legacy in Northern Ireland again, if at all.

Lord Jonathan Caine made the comments in an interview with UTV's View From Stormont programme.

The Government’s draft Legacy Bill would provide immunity for people accused of Troubles offences as long as they co-operate with a new truth recovery body, and would also halt future civil cases and inquests linked to killings during the conflict.

The Bill is opposed by all parties in Northern Ireland.

The  Northern Ireland Troubles Legacy and Reconciliation Bill faced further criticism ahead of reaching the committee stage in the House of Lords last week.

There have also been recent protests against the proposed controversial legislation.

The legislation aims to limit criminal investigations and legal proceedings and extend the prisoner release scheme. It has been heavily criticised by all political parties in Northern Ireland.

It follows claims from UN High Commissioner that the Bill is "incompatible with the UK's international human rights obligations".Lord Caine added, "The House of Lords is not a wrecking chamber", when pressed on whether the government may abandon the Bill.

He also said, "The Bill is not a blanket immunity for all Troubles related incidents", when defending the immunity clause within the bill."

"Many are getting older, and just want to know what happened."

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