Northern Ireland Essay

1027 WordsOct 2, 20125 Pages
ii. Choose three elements which you consider the most important and explain why. Catholic Church Personally I believe that the Catholic Church was a key reason in pushing toward the Northern Ireland peace agreement of 1998. Firstly this is because throughout the 1980s the Catholic Church were the group who pushed the Sinn Fein leaders into trying to look for a peaceful settlement. Individual characters from the church (e.g. priests) would act as messengers between the SDLP and the Sinn Fein. Famously a priest from Belfast, Alec Reid got the two leaders of each group, Gerry Adams and John Hume to get together for talks during the early 90's. Also in 1983 This was crucial as without the talking between the two groups the pursuit to peace would have been impossible. Also in 1983 a Catholic bishop Dr Daly, challenged the Sinn Fein to look at peaceful ways of making the political progress they craved- this was backed up by the leader Gerry Adams saying that he would look at the options available to him (this was significant as it showed that the Sinn Fein were willing to co-operate). John Hume (SDLP leader) said himself that the, 'patience, skill and determination shown by the clergy...indispensable in bringing about the peace we know enjoy' (1995) and so from here we can see that the Catholic Church was very important because they kick-started the long journey towards the peace agreement of 1998. David Trimble Also I believe another incredibly important factor that helped the signing of the 1998 Peace Agreement was David Trimble because he was the leader of the Ulster Unionist Party. This was the largest unionist party in Northern Ireland and without their support, the agreement was doomed. As the deadline for the peace agreement reached, the UUP were the only remaining party who were yet to agree. This led to immense pressure upon the leader of the UUP- Trimble

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