Local view for "http://purl.org/linkedpolitics/eu/plenary/2014-11-12-Speech-3-229-000"

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"Madam President, the people of Northern Ireland have come a long way since the 1997 Good Friday Agreement. The terrible violence in society has become a thing of the past and political institutions are now in place with representatives of all the parties to the Troubles. As Winston Churchill put it so well, ‘jaw-jaw is better than war-war’ and in Northern Ireland talking together has been the way towards peace. Huge steps have been made by individuals and organisations from all parts of a torn society to work together for an inclusive and lasting peace. It is their peace on their terms. But there are still outstanding issues that are getting in the way of full implementation of the peace agreement and these issues must be tackled as soon as possible. Continued divisions within communities remain despite efforts to address them, particularly in the areas of schools and housing. Socio-economic problems are pushing young people towards a life of crime, resulting in anti-social behaviour that other communities would call vandalism; but with fighting so raw in the memory, these young people are drawn down the route of violence. The EU’s Northern Ireland Peace Programme has played, and continues to play, an important role in promoting reconciliation between communities, and over the next five years the EU must continue to help lay the foundations for a true and lasting peace. EU regional funding has also supported economic development. We must thank all those involved with these programmes and we commend their efforts. By reconciling communities, giving hope and opportunities, talking, planning and working together, we can and must help to build a shared society for all the peoples of Northern Ireland."@en1

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