Peace in Northern Ireland is now “relatively secure”, political leaders from across the British Isles have been told, allowing a primary focus on economic recovery.
The British Irish Inter-parliamentary Assembly, meeting in Swansea, heard the last major recession of the late 1980s and early 1990s had been compounded by the ugly backdrop of violence.
But one of the most practical legacies of the peace process is that the gathering, bringing together MPs from Britain and Ireland as well as the regional Assemblies and representatives from the Isle of Man and Channel Islands, could put the economy first, the body’s two leaders stated.
Former Secretary of State Paul Murphy said while the murders of two British Army soldiers and a PSNI constable in March showed peace could not be taken for granted, the opportunity existed to confront the new economic challenges.
“That is a peace dividend that will benefit all British and Irish people,” Mr Murphy, co-chair of the Assembly, said.