Manchester Arena bombing: Figen Murray, mother of victim Martyn Hett, delivers letter urging Rishi Sunak to pass Martyn’s Law | UK News

The bereaved mother of a casualty of the Manchester Arena atrocity trekked from the site of the incident to Westminster to submit a plea for new anti-terror legislation.

Mother Figen Murray, whose son Martyn Hett perished among 22 others during the harrowing explosion executed by Salman Abedi after an Ariana Grande performance in May 2017, reached the doorstep of No 10 coinciding with the seventh remembrance of her son’s passing, delivering a letter in advocacy of ‘Martyn’s Law’.

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Martyn Hett

Embarking from the arena at 11am on May 7, she aimed to directly appeal to Prime Minister Rishi Sunak and advocate for the proposal of the bill, designed to enforce UK event spaces and local governments to adopt terror prevention training and plans, to be formally put forward to Parliament.

She has a scheduled meeting with Mr. Sunak and the leader of the opposition, Sir Keir Starmer, on Wednesday.

She conveyed, “In all fairness to the government, we’ve faced the COVID-19 pandemic and had changes in political leadership – these obstacles have contributed to delays. But the draft for this legislation has been ready for a significant amount of time.

“That’s precisely the reason I’m here. I’m unclear about the cause of further postponements and I’m earnestly awaiting the Prime Minister’s response today about a specific timeline.”

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Mother’s walk to demand new law

“Today marks the solemn seventh year since we lost Martyn. It’s pivotal because I’m set on ensuring that no other family endures what we have been through,” she stated. “Martyn’s Law is about legislating safety in public places, which is an obligation that demands immediate action.”

Figen Murray, mother of Manchester Arena bombing victim Martyn Hett, and her husband Stuart speaking to Labour Party leader Keir Starmer.
Pic PA
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Figen Murray and her husband Stuart in conversation with Sir Keir Starmer. Picture: PA

Mrs. Murray observed Prime Minister’s Questions from the House of Commons gallery and had subsequent engagements with the party leaders.

Mr. Sunak expressed his anticipation of meeting her and recognized Figen Murray’s strenuous efforts and determination in campaigning for her son Martyn’s cause.

Pic: PA
Figen Murray (front right), the mother of victim Martyn Hett, in Hinckley, Leicestershire, as she continues her campaign march to Downing Street to demand the introduction of Martyn's Law for stronger protections against terrorism in public places. Picture date: Tuesday May 14, 2024.
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Figen Murray (pictured right at the front) during her advocacy walk to Downing Street. Image: PA

Sir Keir also echoed the sentiment, welcoming Ms. Murray and endorsing the swift enactment of ‘Martyn’s Law’ into reality.

Further Reading:
Manchester Arena bombing survivors pursuing lawsuit against MI5
Investigating if MI5 could have forestalled the Manchester bombing
The security oversights during the Manchester Arena tragedy

Committing to ‘Martyn’s Law’ was an integral part of the Conservative manifesto in 2019, leading to public consultations. Despite this, the Home Affairs Select Committee offered a critique in July 2023 on a draft version of the Terrorism (Protection of Premises) Bill warning it might endanger smaller businesses and not effectively thwart attacks. Nevertheless, Ms. Murray referred to these concerns as “dangerous and misguided” following the committee’s assessment of the draft bill.

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