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

Why is the Good Friday Agreement proving so difficult to implement?

Extracts from this document...


Why is the Good Friday Agreement proving so difficult to implement? The Good Friday Agreement was voted on by a relatively large turnout of 68.8% in 1998 and was rejected by a significant 29% of people in Northern Ireland. For the past six years it has proved to be difficult to implement and there are a number of reasons for this. The emphasis on issues raised in the agreement has changed over the years and some are proving to be more difficult to implement than others. A major area within the Good Friday Agreement is the setting up of an Assembly. Hard line Unionists such as the DUP refuse to accept the Assembly. They refuse to sit at a table with Sinn F�in in cross party talks while they argue that Sinn F�in still have links with the IRA. The DUP's mindset has been created by fifty two years of unionist rule. They do not wish to accept principles contained within the agreement which they feel they have already rejected in the 1974 power sharing executive. The DUP are now offering a full re-negotiation of the agreement and their slogan for the last elections was, 'It's time for a new deal.' There are deep divisions within the official unionist party. ...read more.


Contained within this was the removal of a number of elements that unionists felt they could identify with. Symbols such as the badge and the uniform were dropped. The title 'Royal Ulster Constabulary' was dropped and this offended many unionists who considered themselves to be British subjects. Some feel that is disrespectful to those who were killed in the line of duty and to their families. Some nationalists are happier with the reforms than others. Sinn F�in say that the reforms don't go far enough and refuse to sit on the District Policing Partnership. Many still associate the RUC with years of repression and injustice. This dates back to the formation of the state when the UVF was drafted into the B-Specials. Controversial policies from the security forces such as 'Shoot to kill' and internment have furthered nationalist hatred over the years. There are now widespread allegations of collusion between the security forces and loyalist paramilitaries. The high profile murders cases of human rights lawyer Pat Finucane and also of Rosemary Nelson are currently under the spotlight. Under the agreement is the early release scheme of paramilitary prisoners. People feel uneasy with convicted murderers walking the streets. Victim's families on both sides of the political divide feel insulted by this clause. This has been made worse by continued paramilitary activity and the continuing loyalist feud in particular. ...read more.


For example the DUP rarely refer to the Good Friday Agreement as that but more commonly the Belfast agreement due to the religious element. Nationalists are further antagonised by the DUP referring to Sinn F�in as Sinn F�in/IRA. Gerry Adams famously said that the struggle was not over but had merely changed. Flags are another area where there is disagreement. Alex Maskey flew the Irish Tricolour in the Lord Mayor's office in Belfast City Hall. This was a contentious issue as unionists felt that it undermines the union with Britain. The Union flag was taken down at Newtonards council offices and unionists are currently campaigning to have it raised again. The flying of paramilitary flags particularly around the marching season upsets and provokes nationalists who feel threatened by such and obvious display of paramilitary strength. The agreement could now be said to be more difficult to implement than before due to the recent election results. The middle ground lost out while extremists at the opposite end of the political spectrum gained votes. The DUP have a majority of 33 seats and Sinn F�in has 27. This perhaps suggests that more moderate voters have become disillusioned and no longer believe in the capabilities of their politicians to do their job. There could be a feeling of apathy towards the peace process. However this does not mean that peace is not obtainable in Northern Ireland and with hard work and co-operation it is achievable. ...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. Northern Ireland - The Good Friday Agreement was created in April 1998, and then ...

    It was created when John Major (Prime Minister of Britain) and John Bruton (Prime Minister of Ireland) agreed on a 'twin track' approach to decommissioning. An international body was set up, chaired by former US Senator George Mitchell, accompanied by Harri Holkeri, former Finnish Prime Minister and General John de Chastelain, Canadian Chief of Defence staff.

  2. The Good Friday Agreement

    This was also helped by the newly reformed policing, who stood up to Loyalist marchers where they might have turned a blind eye in the past, an example of this was in Drumcree in 1998 and 1999. Despite the improvement, the violence that continued was proof that the Good Friday Agreement had not completely solved the issue at hand.

  1. Describe and explain Unionist reactions to the Good Friday Agreement of 1998

    Britain didn't not accept this idea, nor reject it - they suggested it should happen over a period of 3 years. They carried on negotiating until Britain said they would do it in two years. Gerry Adams was still asking one year for their release and so by 12pm no deal had been signed.

  2. To what extent does the "Good Friday Agreement" represent a turning point for the ...

    Sinn Fein agreed to the Principles, but the IRA leaders did not agree and refused to hand over any weapons. Consequently the British government demanded an election in Northern Ireland: Prime Minister John Major wanted to see how much support the paramilitaries had.

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

    The British Government however, said that Sinn Fein could only join if IRA had a ceasefire and so this out the IRA into a corner. However at this stage, there was a factor which could back track the whole peace progress which had been made; the British Conservative Government did

  2. “Why has it proved so difficult to reach agreement about what happened on Bloody ...

    The paratroopers were, and still are, one of the World`s most effective military units, recognised for their ability to fight and win in difficult circumstances. It is a regiment renowned for violence, and yet on Bloody Sunday,it was used for crowd control methods.

  1. The History of Conflict in Ireland.

    So, it was the relatives that got them to think politics. The Failed 1974-75 Cease Fire During 1974-75, after the failure of power-sharing in 1974, the IRA went into another cease-fire in which they believed that some sort of understanding with the British government that there was going to be disengagement.

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

    Eire and Britain were on the whole very pleased with the agreement. Many parties thought it had great possibilities, and, for a while, the violence rate dropped. The involvement in Eire helped to unit the north and south, however, the unionists were again annoyed at the interference of Eire, so the MPs resigned.

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