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What are the main differences between the beliefs of the Republicans/Nationalists and the Loyalists/Unionists?

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Introduction

What are the main differences between the beliefs of the Republicans/Nationalists and the Loyalists/Unionists? There's a past history of violence in Northern Ireland. The violence goes back thousands of years. The violence has stemmed from two key beliefs. Unionists have always wanted to remain part of the United Kingdom, they are mainly protestant and see themselves as British citizens. However Nationalist have wanted a united Ireland or at least more independence from the United Kingdom, they generally tend to be Catholic and see themselves as Irish although they may be part of the UK. However not all Nationalists believe this some moderate nationalists would be happy with Ireland having more independence from the UK. There are dominations in both groups; extreme Unionists are called Loyalists, whilst extreme Nationalists are called Republicans. The extreme groups are much more likely to use violence to achieve their goals compared to the others who are more likely to try peaceful methods. Religion has always played a part of the conflict in Northern Ireland. ...read more.

Middle

The DUP would never agree to anything that gave Republicans or Nationalists any more power than they have at this present moment. * UUP- Ulster Unionist Party (Moderate) This party is run by David Trimble and is a moderate party who believe in more peaceful methods. They used to have a lot of seats at Stormont Assembly but lost its seats to DUP over recent years. The UUP although a moderate group would never want Northern Ireland to become part of the Republic of Ireland. * UVF - Ulster Volunteer Force (paramilitary) The UVF is paramilitary group that is very prone to using violence to achieve its targets. The UVF would be outraged if Northern Ireland became part of the Republic Of Ireland, as they would feel betrayed by not only the UUP and the DUP but also buy the British government. * UFF - Ulster Freedom Fighters (paramilitary) The UFF is another paramilitary that is very prone to using violence to achieve its goals. The UFF would also be outraged and would also feel betrayed and would be likely turn to violence again and break the ceasefire. ...read more.

Conclusion

They are well known for continuing in terrorist acts whilst the ceasefire is in place. The real IRA is not happy with what they have at the moment with Northern Ireland as they want the whole of Ireland as one republic. * SDLP- Social Democratic Labour Party (Moderate) The SDLP is run by a man called Mark Durkan. It is the main democratic Nationalist party in Northern Ireland. SDLP used to have a lot of seats at Stormont Assembly but lost them to Sinn Fein. The SDLP is totally committed to only ever using peaceful methods * Sinn Fein - (Extreme) Sinn Fein is another extreme party and is well known for representing the IRA. The leader of Sinn Fein is a man called Gerry Adams. Sinn Fein itself is Gaelic for "We Ourselves Alone" this itself describes their viewpoint and their beliefs. Sinn Fein has the second largest number of seats in Stormont Assembly. The important thing to remember is that views above are generalised and not everybody feels the same. With all the different views, it is easy to understand why the peace process took so long, and there are still problems and may be more violence in the future. By Sam Edwards ...read more.

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