Bruton appeals for final end to IRA violence
September 11, 1996
WASHINGTON (CNN) -- Irish Prime Minister John Bruton called Wednesday for a final end to violence by the Irish Republican Army so that peace might finally be achieved in Northern Ireland.
"That can only happen when everyone has been convinced that violence will never again be used to intimidate opponents, or to control supporters. Never again," Bruton said in a speech delivered to a joint meeting of the U.S. Congress.
Bruton said that differences -- such as the centuries-old conflict between Catholics and Protestants in Northern Ireland -- should not be barriers to a democratic coming-together of the region's peoples for common benefit.
"We're not asking Unionists to cease to be loyally British," he said. "Nor are we asking nationalists to cease to be loyally Irish."
"Living with difference -- that's the challenge for the United States today," he said. He also said living with difference was important for Ireland and Northern Ireland. (22 sec/256K AIFF or WAV sound)
Prefacing his address with a history lesson that compared the creation of the United States with that of the European Union some two centuries later, Bruton said that the EU had grown from the model set by the United States in the late 18th century. (22 sec/256K AIFF or WAV sound)
The European Union, he added, now provides a model of cooperation among peoples of varied allegiances.
"If such a model can work for Europe, it can work for Northern Ireland," said Bruton. "And it can provide a model for the world."
Bruton also called for a reform of the United Nations, adding Ireland's support to what he called the U.S. push for "world rules against terrorism."
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