This year will be a difficult and testing year for innocent victims of terrorism, according to Lurgan-based Ulster Human Rights Watch.

The Government’s decision to forge ahead with legacy legislation coupled with the continuing and hurtful glorification of terrorist acts leave victims feeling isolated and re-traumatised.

UHRW Advocacy Manager, Axel Schmidt, said: “Every political party in Northern Ireland and the Commissioner for Victims and Survivors for NI oppose the legacy legislation that is going through Parliament. Yet, the Government has single-mindedly ploughed ahead with what will likely turn out to be bad law.

“Victims of barbarous acts of brutality perpetrated against defenceless men, women and children deserve better. Instead of undermining the rule of law and closing off the prospect of prosecutions, the Government should be looking at victim-centred and sensitive options.

“To add insult to injury for victims, the eulogising of murderers who cold-bloodedly went about their nefarious work is a source of constant pain. It’s stomach-churning and revolting every time there’s a vile chant, whether at a sporting occasion or at a concert.

“The lack of sensitivity is appalling. It reflects an awful indifference to their continuing suffering, sometimes decades after losing loved ones. It must end, and those in positions to influence and persuade must re-double their efforts to get this kind of behaviour stamped out.”