50 Years Ago – 1 January 1972

1 January 1972

Brian Faulkner, the Prime Minister of Northern Ireland, criticised the BBC for a controversial political programme which they were forced to cancel before it was produced. Faulkner said that it would have promoted extremism and that “the BBC have not been prudent enough to explore fully the views of all parties concerned”.

Dom Mintoff (in above photo), the Prime Minister of Malta, changed a deadline for the withdrawal of all British troops from the island to give an additional two weeks, until 15 January 1972. The British Government rejected the extension, saying that they would leave by 31 March 1972 and no earlier, following their refusal to significantly increase the sums made payable to Malta for British troops to be stationed on the island.

300 children escaped injury in Belfast following a bomb explosion near to the Classic Cinema in the city centre, with 18 people being hurt, but none seriously.

The RUC reported that a young man had been stripped to the waist in the city before being tarred and feathered, with the IRA saying that they were responsible for the attack.