Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 23 October 2014

Young people urged to help end interface conflict in Northern Ireland

Young people need to become more involved in solving Northern Ireland's interface conflict, a Belfast community worker said today.

Peace walls need to come down alongside the divisions in people's minds, John Peacock added.

A group of youths from flashpoint areas across Belfast gathered today at the gates of the peaceline on Lanark Way, west Belfast, to mark the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall.

Mr Peacock said: "Personally we will want the walls to come down. The barriers in people's minds are the bigger issue rather than the physical issue."

They played basketball with the Peace Players, who met former US President George Bush in Belfast in 2008, and carried out a drumming workshop. US congressmen, Commissioner for Children and Young People Patricia Lewsley attended.

Mr Peacock, community relations manager at Youth Link, said young people were divided about when the walls should come down, with some saying now and others in a generation.

"The ultimate aim of the group is to give the young people a voice on the issue, it is about engaging them in conversation about the future," he added.

The children were also due to meet Belfast Lord Mayor Naomi Long at the city hall.

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