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Private Patrick Kelly to be awarded posthumous medal

The Irish Justice Minister Alan Shatter will posthumously award the Military Star Medal to the family of Private Patrick Kelly in a special ceremony Custume Barracks in Athlone on Monday.

Alan Shatter will present the medal to the family of Private Patrick Kelly.

The soldier was murdered by the IRA along with a trainee police officer in County Leitrim in 1983.

They were killed while attempting to rescue kidnapped businessman Don Tidey.

Soldiers and police were taking part in the operation to free Mr Tidey when an IRA unit opened fire.

No-one have ever been convicted in connection with Private Kelly's death.

The Military Star has historically been awarded posthumously to members of the Irish defence forces who lost their lives overseas.

This is the first time the military honour has been awarded to a soldier who died in Ireland.

During the ceremony Mr Shatter will lay a wreath in memory of Mr Kelly and award the citation and medal to members of the his family.

Private Kelly's eldest son David will accept the framed citation from the minister.

One of his other sons, Corporal Andrew Kelly, a serving member of the Defence Forces, will be presented with the medal on behalf of the family.

Last year, David Kelly confronted presidential candidate Martin McGuinness on the campaign trail and accused him of being on the IRA Army council at the time of his father's killing.

Mr McGuinness denied the allegations.

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