MEPs called on the government to take all necessary measures, including, if necessary, legislation to ensure that “comfort letters” have no legal value. In her report, published in July 2014, the judge stated that the letters were not an amnesty and that the system was legal. The letters sparked a political crisis after it emerged that more than 150 suspects had been asked not to be sought. Downey, of Donegal, had his case dismissed by a senior magistrate when it turned out that he had one of the letters. The judge in the case decided that the letter of official insurance against prosecution, despite by mistake. As a country in the South, I now ask myself a disturbing question: is the Good Friday agreement really what it did? I have five comments on that. The Northern Ireland Committee conducts its own investigation into the letter scheme and attempted to have Mr Blair testify for nine months. Northern Ireland`s first minister, Peter Robinson, has threatened to resign if there is no judicial inquiry into the letter scheme. He encouraged “those who place their duties to read the agreement, to focus on the effects of an Irish maritime border as much as a north-south border, and to remember that, in an increasingly unstable world, the United Kingdom was a firm ally of the United States around the world – this is not the time to reduce and break friendships if the image of the United States has been tarnished in much of the world.” But as part of the Good Friday agreement, convicted IRA terrorists were released early and suspected terrorists then received “on the run” letters.

It was specified that the names of those who received the consolation letters would not be publicly disclosed. However, it found that the letters were legal and not an “amnesty” for those who received them. Justice Hallet found that the letters were not an amnesty and that the scheme was legal. Any attempt to overturn the Old Bailey`s decision or legally invalidate the letters would increase internal pressure on Sinn Féin`s leaders, just as the DUP`s high command has collapsed in recent days.