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Offences Against Children: Belfast

Home Office written question – answered on 3rd November 2014.

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Photo of Naomi Long Naomi Long Alliance, Belfast East

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, when she will decide whether she will include Kincora Boys Home in East Belfast in the scope of the child sex abuse inquiry led by Fiona Woolf.

Photo of Naomi Long Naomi Long Alliance, Belfast East

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, whether the terms of reference have yet been established for the inquiry into historical child sex abuse commissioned by her Department.

Photo of Norman Baker Norman Baker The Minister of State, Home Department

The Terms of Reference for the Independent Panel Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse have been published and the geographic scope is limited to England and Wales. The protection of children is a devolved matter, and it would be inappropriate for the inquiry panel to make recommendations for Northern Ireland concerning the running of the child protection system there.

However, as the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland set out in her statement to Parliament on 21 October, the Government is determined that no stone should be left unturned to investigate serious allegations of institutional failure. She has also made clear that the Government, Ministry of Defence and the Security Services will give the Inquiry the fullest possible co-operation. We currently believe that the Historical Institutional Abuse Inquiry is the best place to do that in respect of Kincora and we will work closely with, the Chairman of the Inquiry, Sir Anthony Hart to help to achieve that.

We will monitor carefully the extent to which the Inquiry is able to make progress in respect of material relevant to Kincora and we will look at the

situation again if the Inquiry tells us it is unable to determine the facts.

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