Scots miners convicted in 1980s strikes could be pardoned

The review has reportedly proposed that miners who were given criminal convictions during the strikes will be pardoned.

Scottish miners who were convicted of offences during strikes in the 1980s could be pardoned as part of an independent review.

The review, established by the Scottish Government, has reportedly proposed that miners who were given criminal convictions – such as breach of the peace – during the strikes will be pardoned.

The miners’ strike saw over 26 million people across the UK protest against colliery closures.

It was led by Arthur Scargill, of the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM), against the National Coal Board, a government agency run under Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher.

Labour MSP Neil Findlay has welcomed the recommendation by the an independent review, saying: “It is fantastic news that the review has taken on board my suggestion of a pardon.

“The miners were victims of a political war waged on them by the Thatcher government.

“Many innocent people have gone to their graves with the stain of a conviction against their name, now we can ensure that those who remain receive justice.

“This has been a long and emotional campaign, but it shows that with determination and right on your side then historic wrongs can be righted. I urge Humza Yousaf to act quickly to take on these recommendations as quickly as possible.

“I am looking forward to this being announced in Parliament and legislation coming forward to deliver these pardons.

“I am very proud of the role I have played in achieving this result and the outstanding support from mining communities, the NUM and Thompson’s solicitors. The UK Government should take notice of this report and announce a full public inquiry into Orgreave.”

The report is to be published by the Scottish Government later this year.

Justice secretary Humza Yousaf said: “I understand the strength of feeling which still exists among communities affected by the miners’ strike and I am thankful to the many people, including miners and retired police officers, who have met me to discuss its continuing impact.

“Since receiving the report from John Scott QC Solicitor Advocate, I have been considering my response and, subject to parliamentary time being available, plan to update parliament in October.”

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