• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

How successful has the Good Friday Agreement (in Northern Ireland) been?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

How successful has the Good Friday Agreement (in Northern Ireland) been? The troubles in N.I stem back to the 17th century when Protestant settlers took land from native Catholics. There was not only a political divide, but a religious one as well. This divide remains almost 400 years on making it difficult to secure consent from the population, when it comes to the question of who lays claim to the land? Previous attempts at peace such as Sunningdale in 1973 through to the New Ireland Reform in 1984 had all been rejected or defeated. It was the Good Friday Agreement which was a historic breakthrough in starting to bring an end to the troubles in N.I. The 65-page document, signed in 1998, attempted to improve relationships within Northern Ireland, and between the political parties and groups involved. The final Agreement was posted to every household in Northern Ireland and a referendum was held in May 1998. ...read more.

Middle

The Democratic Unionist Party even go as far as to condemn The UUP for entering into talks with terrorists, and as the GFA didn't directly deal with decommissioning, no real action has been made towards it. Whenever the IRA does make any statements regarding the matter the UUP can be very dismissive. There are still groups in N.I which are still committed to terrorism, so how can the GFA have been a success? Prior to the Northern Ireland assembly collapsing, (arguably the biggest failure in the process so far) anti-agreement unionists, led by Ian Paisley leader of the Democratic Unionist Party described the 2001 elections to the assembly as a "second referendum." What he was referring to was the choice Unionist voters had to make between the pro agreement UUP party and his own anti agreement party, the DUP. Rather worryingly, for those who support the peace process, he made a huge gain on them, and this was also reflected by nationalists where Sinn Fein took votes from the SDLP. ...read more.

Conclusion

There is a real willingness for it to work, and although it may only be a change in attitude since September 11th, people strongly reject terrorism and violence now. There is also no real alternative. The people don't want to return to how things were prior to the GFA. People have lost family and friends, and they voted it for it, so they'll support it, as will the Government of the UK and Ireland. The Irish government released a declaration of support, the first point of it being: "We, the participants in the multi-party negotiations, believe that the agreement we have negotiated offers a truly historic opportunity for a new beginning." I believe that there will be an end to the problems eventually. The first big steps have been made towards peace, and if gradual decommissioning continues, then slowly British troops will leave. There will probably always be a problem as to the legitimacy of the state, but I am optimistic that over time violence will become part of N.I's history, and through education and talking they'll be able to find a resolve. George Austin ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Northern Ireland 1965-85 section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Northern Ireland 1965-85 essays

  1. How successful has the peace process in Northern Ireland been?

    This was set up not just to promote trust but also understanding between the two religions traditions. There were lots of successes for this initiative; firstly both the SDLP and the Alliance Party supported the declaration. This meant the Unionists and Nationalists were starting to get on better with each

  2. The History of Conflict in Ireland.

    And it was they who were engaged in the civil war against the majority of the community, it was they who argued that you do not lay down your weapons, it was they who refused to take any oath of allegiance to the monarchy in Britain.

  1. Why has it been difficult to obtain peace in Northern Ireland?

    This caused the power sharing executive to resign and as a result of this direct rule from Westminster returned, the Sunningdale Agreement had failed. The next attempted peace agreement was the 1985 Anglo-Irish Agreement; this was between Margaret Thatcher and the Irish Taoiseach Garret Fitzgerald.

  2. How has Northern Ireland changed since the Good Friday Agreement, and what previous attempts ...

    decommission some weapons, despite this, a clause in the Good Friday Agreement meant that publication of the details of amounts and types of weapons were banned. Therefore unionists had to go by the word of the international group in charge of decommissioning, leaving them unsure as to what extent it had occurred.

  1. Why was it so hard to establish a regional police force in Northern Ireland ...

    Catholics/ nationalists refused to accept the existence of Northern Ireland and therefore the legitimacy of the government and police force. The Northern Ireland Civil Rights Association - NICRA was created in February 1967 to try to expose and abolish discrimination.

  2. Explain why the marching season in Northern Ireland still causes tension between the two ...

    become a MP * Catholics can not take higher education or take a professional jobs This therefore led to the Irish Catholics disliking the Protestants more. They felt like foreigners in their own country even though their religion was the native religion and the majority.

  1. What made the Good Friday Agreement possible in 1998?

    They had a more subtle approach and did not demand impossible things. The Labour party helped to bring the chain back together, especially an MP named Mo Mowlam. She made in particular progress with the paramilitary groups on both sides by visiting Maze Prison and got both to agree to a peace settlement, they all trusted her.

  2. Prior to the Good Friday Agreement in 1998, all attempts to bring peace to ...

    Normally, in these situations, the hardest group to convince in such an affair with the British Government were the Nationalist paramilitaries, like the IRA, yet Mowlam gained support from even them. This may be a factor that has led to a greater amount of success and peace in this agreement compared to previous attempts.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work