Visit to Northern Ireland: Joe Biden asks Belfast to resume the meeting

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During his visit to Belfast to mark the Good Friday Agreement, which restored peace to Northern Ireland after the civil war between Catholics and Protestants, US President Joe Biden called the Stormont Assembly (Parliament ), the mechanism of “compassion” to end the conflict, share power again and resume the journey of the encounter.

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The American president arrived in Belfast on Tuesday night for a unusual four day visit to Northern Ireland and Ireland, on the 25th anniversary of that frozen and snowy Good Friday.

In the middle of the night, all sides managed to reach a historic peace agreement, which ended a civil war which left 3,200 dead. He met Prime Minister Rishi Sunak and traveled to Dublin, Ireland in the afternoon.

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“As a friend, I hope it is not too presumptuous of me to say that I believe the democratic institutions established through the Good Friday Agreement they are still fundamental for the future of Northern Ireland,” said the US president, in his speech at Ulster University, in a post-war glass building.

a conciliatory tone

The conciliatory tone tried not to irritate the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP), which is supposed to lead the Assembly together with Sein Fein, the Catholic Republicans, and refuses because They do not approve of the new version of Brexit with the agreement of Northern Ireland.

In a carefully worded part of his speech, the US president called for a return to power-sharing in Stormont.

In language clearly designed not to irritate DUP extremists, whose protest against the Windsor Framework has created a political deadlock and blocked power-sharing, he said: “It’s a decision for you to make, not me.” But he continued: “I hope that the Assembly and the Executive will be restored soon.”

Biden speaks at the University of Ulster.  Photo: Jim WATSON/AFP

Biden speaks at the University of Ulster. Photo: Jim WATSON/AFP

“I know better than anyone how difficult democracy can be. Sometimes in the US we have first hand experience how fragile even long-standing democratic institutions can be. You saw what happened on January 6th in my country.

“We have learned that with every generation, democracy needs champions,” the president said.

enormous political tension

Biden, the most irish of North American presidents, arrives in Northern Ireland in the midst of enormous political tension.

The DUP ensured that his speech it will not change its conditions. The guerrillas have rearmed.

A new IRA, Catholic and republican, emerged and Protestant guerrillas rallied into the UDF. Four bombs have been found near Derry when Biden was supposed to arrive in the provinces.

The guerrillas have rearmed again in Northern Ireland.  Photo: Bloomberg

The guerrillas have rearmed again in Northern Ireland. Photo: Bloomberg

Chief Inspector John Caldwell was shot and killed by masked men in Omagh in February. He was killed. His attackers, believed to be members of the New IRA, have yet to be found.

Biden praised how political parties worked together in the aftermath of the police officer’s murder. The US president said the work of political leaders shows that “the enemies of peace will not prevail”.

“Northern Ireland is not coming back,” he said. He added that the Good Friday Agreement has taught people that “when things seem fragile, that’s when hope and hard work are most needed.”

“The Good Friday Agreement has shown us that there is hope for reparation, even in the most terrible ruptures,” he insisted.

Biden, with a large audience, at the University of Ulster.  Photo: EFE

Biden, with a large audience, at the University of Ulster. Photo: EFE


Biden also took a moment to comment on the work of a young woman named Aimee Clint, who wrote A autism book and the respectful treatment of people, which has been donated to schools in Northern Ireland.

“This is the real power of the Good Friday Agreement: compassion. Compassion has changed the way the whole region sees itself,” she added.

On Brexit, he supported the political solution found by British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak: “Now I know that the United Kingdom’s exit from the European Union created complex challenges here in Northern Ireland, and I encourage the leaders of the UK, the EU, to address issues in a way that serves Northern Ireland’s best interests.”

He added: “The Windsor Framework addresses the practical realities of Brexit. It is an essential step in securing hard-won peace and progress.”

“I think the stability and predictability this framework offers encourages more investment in Northern Ireland. Significant investment in Northern Ireland,” he said.

Biden opens an umbrella upon his arrival in Dublin, after visiting Belfast.  Photo: Jim Watson/AFP

Biden opens an umbrella upon his arrival in Dublin, after visiting Belfast. Photo: Jim Watson/AFP

The United States supports them

If peace was made in Northern Ireland it was thanks to the open support of the United States and President Bill Clinton to the peace process, together with the Irish and British prime ministers Tony Blair and its initiator, the Conservative John Major, who initiated the secret talks. Joe Biden has assured the people of Northern Ireland that Americans are “with you every step of the way.”

“I want them to know that there is a large population that is interested in what is happening here, that cares a lot about what is happening here. This is something that unites Washington, unites the United States,” he told them.

“Protecting the peace and the Good Friday Agreement is a priority for both Democrats and Republicans,” he said.

In trouble, How was the conflict known?in the United States there were collections for Catholics, which they were second-class citizens in Ulster.

Today both communities, Protestant and Catholic, are demographically almost equal. A prophecy from Martin McGuinness, former Catholic IRA commander and peace negotiator. “Be good Catholics the population will increase”, he said as a good reason to lay down their arms.

Biden, the Irish president

Kennedy, Clinton, Biden are all American presidents with strong Irish roots. Biden feels like an Irishman and On this trip you will visit the homes and cities of your ancestors. He knows the country and its past well. In the speech he recalled his previous visits to Northern Ireland, when he saw roads blocked during the riots.

Biden lands in Dublin after his visit to Belfast.  Photo: AP

Biden lands in Dublin after his visit to Belfast. Photo: AP

“When the ceasefire was declared it was like a sea change,” he recalled. “The tidal waves began to recede, hope was coming.”

He then referred to the “family ties” between Northern Ireland and the United States: “Their story is our story,” he said. “But most importantly, their future is the future of the United States.”

Biden went off the script in his speech and made it clear that he too has British roots. A famous British sailor by name Sir George Biden he is related to her and has ancestors in Nottingham. Why British tabloids accused him of being anti-British and don’t go to the coronation of King Carlos III, which will be attended by his wife.

Irish Troubles

Despite the persuasion, the DUP said “Biden will not change the political dynamic in Northern Ireland”. He said the words of Jeffrey Donaldson, head of the Democratic Unionist party, despite promises of US investments.

“As we heard in your speech, it is not your job to make decisions for Ireland’s political leaders. But you said the US is ready to help Northern Ireland in any way it can.”

“But we know what we have to do,” stressed the DUP leader, who is a member of the British House of Commons.

A Biden poster in County Louth, Ireland.  Photo: EFE

A Biden poster in County Louth, Ireland. Photo: EFE

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak spoke to President Joe Biden at his central Belfast hotel, but the trade deal has not been discussed so many times promised by Donald Trump.

The US will not offer it unless there is an agreement in the Northern Ireland Assembly and the border is guaranteed. The British government tried to cover up Biden’s exit after Brexit, his bad relationship with Boris Johnson and his new approach to Sunak, a moderate.

President Biden has been left at the mercy of bad weather and a severe storm, which is hitting Britain and Ireland, with hurricane-force winds. That’s why he didn’t go by helicopter to County Louth, his first stop in Ireland. traveled to dublin on Air Force One.


Source: Clarin

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