§ Mr. O'Halloran
asked the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what action he proposes to take about compensation for property which has been demolished in the course of security measures but for which, for technical reasons, compensation has not hitherto been payable.
§ Mr. Merlyn Rees
A number of empty properties were demolished in the past—and particularly during 1972 and 1973—by or on behalf of the security forces, to prevent their being being used as cover for terrorist attacks. I have been aware that, in a number of instances, the necessary Order under Northern Ireland emergency legislation was, owing to the urgent security requirements at the time, not formally issued. The property owner has, in consequence, been unable to claim compensation under the Northern Ireland (Emergency Provisions) Act 1973.
My right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Defence and I have therefore 206W jointly approved an arrangement to make payments on an extra-statutory basis to claimants of the sums that would have been payable under the compensation legislation if the necessary order had been obtained.