UPDATE: British victims of Tunisia massacre "unlawfully killed"

Danny Clifford of former Birmingham City football player Denis Thwaites, 70, and his wife Elaine, 69, who lived in Blackpool, who were among the 30 Britons killed in the Tunisian beach massacre
Danny Clifford of former Birmingham City football player Denis Thwaites, 70, and his wife Elaine, 69, who lived in Blackpool, who were among the 30 Britons killed in the Tunisian beach massacre
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All 30 British victims of the 2015 Tunisia terror attacker, including Blackpool couple Denis and Elaine Thwaites, were "unlawfully killed", the coroner has said.

Coroner Nicholas Loraine-Smith rejected calls from lawyers for some of the dead people's relatives to rule "neglect" by travel firm TUI or the hotel owners played a role in their killing.

He said the law on neglect did not, in his view, apply to tourists who voluntarily went abroad and that better planning and actions by hotel staff may not have prevented the atrocity in which 38 people were killed by radicalised Islamic extremist Seifeddine Rezgui.

The judge said he would rule on each British victim individually, adding: "My conclusion is that all 30 were unlawfully killed."

The judge said although in general the response of the hotel staff was "disorganised and chaotic" some of them displayed "conspicuous personal courage" in their efforts to protect the guests.

He said this courage was also shown by guests at the hotel too.

Summing up the evidence heard during the inquest, Judge Loraine-Smith referred to the response of police and military, including the officer who "fainted through terror and panic", and the guard who took off his shirt to hide the fact he was an officer.

He said with the exception of two marine guards, no police entered the hotel grounds until the gunman had killed all 38 tourists.

The judge also referred to a unit that stopped off to pick up more weapons instead of going straight to the scene.

"They had everything they required to confront the gunman and could have been at the scene within minutes," he said, adding: "The delay was deliberate and unjustifiable."

Victims' relatives fought back tears as Judge Loraine-Smith ruled on each of the dead in alphabetical order, saying: "At approximately 11.45am on the morning of June 26 2015 a terrorist who was armed with a high-velocity firearm and improvised explosive devices began shooting at the tourists who were on the beach at the rear of the Riu Imperial Marhaba Hotel in Sousse in the Republic of Tunisia.

"The terrorist moved from the beach into the grounds and inside of the hotel."

Many relatives have watched the six-week inquest at the Royal Courts of Justice, with more following proceedings via videolinks set up in courts in other parts of the UK closer to their homes.

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