tv Inside Story Al Jazeera April 10, 2021 8:30pm-9:01pm +03
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together however since the military coup in favor of the 1st there has been talk of alliances of the ethnic armed groups working together. they are very very different groups they have different levels of training of technology different arms different weapons different ambitions frankly but they have all appeared to be united behind this message that what is going on with the military with the burn with the me i'm a military against the protest is is unacceptable and that they would fight back at some stage iran says that it's begun testing new advanced uranium enrichment centrifuges just ahead of another round of talks in vienna president hassan rouhani made the announcement during a virtual meeting on iran's annual national nuclear technology day terror has been steadily moving away from the terms of the 2015 nuclear deal since the u.s.
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it's the worst violence northern ireland has seen in years pro british loyalists have been rioting every day for a week angry about those issues more than 20 years since the good friday agreement is peace in northern ireland this is inside story. hello welcome to the program. the 1998 good friday agreement brought peace to
northern ireland but the issues that divide of the region haven't gone away and now in the aftermath of the u.k.'s departure from the e.u. the situation has got worse and threatens to derail vatican pro british loyalists say the post begs a trade agreement what's in more than plays in the u.k. while i wish nationalists accused them of using the issue to stir up trouble dozens of police officers have been hurt in a week of riots prompting regional and international governments to appeal for calm it's a complicated issue that would break down with our guest shortly this report from simmons in belfast. the situation is tense nothing like it has been on wednesday and thursday not at this time but this can be the loyalists saying that they want to have a calm out of respect but this problem still persists there is
a whole round of speculation about some sort of suspension but they are ignoring calls from the assembly the northern all of the somebody to stop this whole protest movement by saying there can't be any peace right now because the brics it because of the situation they're in over imports exports the the whole bureaucracy of of the ports and goods from britain this place being really a part of the european union now with the border in the r.'s 3 so the brics it is meant to be the central issue but there are other complications like always in northern ireland there's more behind the story there's a situation where the funeral a year ago was took place as a prominent ira member bobby story and at that funeral something like 2000
shin fein supporters gathered and at the end of it all the unions said this was in breach of covert regulations and prosecution says it should be made across the board particularly at the senior shin fein leadership there that didn't take place all all in foster has now called for the resignation of the chief constable and that has not if you can see everyone's reliance on the security forces but right now that they're under fire from the politicians themselves so it's by no means a secure situation here. let's take a closer look at the rest between the protests and loyalists who want to remain part of the u.k. and the catholic nationalists who want to unite with ireland the latest violence has drawn comparisons to the true. marble's the 3 decade conflict between the 2 sides that killed at least 3600 people the conflict ended in 1998 when a power sharing government was set up under the so-called good friday agreement but
there have been occasional attacks on security forces and 6 tarion street violence and the belfast administration collapse into a 1017 and remain suspended for more than 2 years it was june of the start of 2020 but deep mistrust remains on and on both sides about cultural and political issues including the status of the irish language. let's bring in our guests now in belfast juliane kaur johnston a political commentator and former belfast city councillor in dublin done a. professor of the school of law and government of the dublin city university he's also the author of from partition to bragg's of the irish government a northern ireland autumn belfast brian finn a political columnist for the irish years and former social democratic labor party politician welcome to the program julie is it fair to describe what is happening in
northern ireland as an express and of anger by the. the loyalists disenfranchised with the breads are trading arrangements. yes i said that's fair i am an experienced on a combination of issues that have led to today's events and i would say that there is orchestrating violence or protests pitting and violence are we going to mine or where to take and that violence is not representative of all of the communities aspirations or direction of travel in which rich which which is just here to protest decisions that have been mia recently and i ever that's not to be confused with debt with contentment because there is if contentment people are angry or angry at the british government they're angry at the g.d.p. they're angry at the irish government and they're angry at the p.p.s. done a chaos started in derry. and newton and is tossed to the spreading
of those areas are predominantly loyalists in a so what's the message people are trying to convey to the establishment well that's that's difficult because it's not being necessarily articulated by political representatives of people on the ground i think people on the ground have been perhaps emboldened by some statements that we made in in recent times by in particular the democratic unionist party but i think it's a good point maybe to take a step back and reflect on the fact that today of all days is. the anniversary of the good friday agreement and and it's 23 years now since that seminal agreement was was signed and and the good friday agreement was it was an exercise in conflict management not conflict resolution the conflict is not resolved and honest in many ways it institutionalize the conflict by and in that sense the the guns have been
decommissioned but the the mindsets that led to the conflict in the 1st place have not been fully put aside and people still live separate lives in northern ireland they they read separate newspapers they go to separate schools they live in separate neighborhoods and there's still a very 0 sum winner takes all approach to politics in northern ireland so what what you have found is that it particularly since bragg says. that the constitutional issue has come back into focus and there is this sense certain now among loyalists that the way the break that has panned out and remember it was the democratic unionist party which advocated brags that against the wishes of majority people in northern ireland but the way it is panned out has not been to the advantage of the unionist slash loyalist community and that is at the heart of a lot of what's going on right now brian could be pull economy combined with brags its aftermath a low with a cove it 19 impact on society is to that's what i was talking about
particularly that this has not been resolved conflict itself and suddenly what is happening on the streets. yes there are there are a lot of factors and i think you know julie is correct that the accent when you saying this sort of arriving at disturbances that we've seen are not reflective of what political representatives want to do. most of the people are causing disturbance rioting are teenagers and last night 3 of them were arrested who were 14 years old and they certainly would not be aware of the complexities of. sun and rechecks that at the ports or simple tills coming in and for a lot of the kids europe or this or they call here sometimes recreational rioting and all the youth clubs are closed everything's in lockdown there is other direct
correlation between the prayer of the rioting has taken place and it is very localized in places you mentioned earlier there is a direct correlation between those areas and a lot of poverty unemployment and everything's been made worse by the pandemic. and some of these children are actually being used by more sinister forces the police have concluded that there aren't organized paramilitaries behind this but there are criminal gangs and some of whose drug dealing has been disrupted curiously enough by the checks at the ports they no longer get holes in supplies from glasgow and liverpool and they're also only able to launder the money they've got from drugs because all the businesses are in lockdown there's nothing that they can do to transact this so some of the writing began actually as a protest against the police being very successful and arresting
a large number of paramilitaries near new knowledge and this is a thing a limited jelly you have a one hand those who are tell you that because the police has been successfully carrying. those crackdowns on guns operating in different parts of northern ireland that you have this events happening on the other hand people would tell you know the union is the reason why they are on this race is because the door want to see if they are rich see border issue shaping their future. i mean what brian has said i've heard myself archly from commentators but not from within the community and from within the community there is a grew in discontent has been for some time now with the democratic intercept it to her credit union as party and its leadership are not go off and there's a feeling that the party has who is it up to the reset of the trade to northern ireland or betrayed northern ireland in the past and by giving effectively european
union and a role in northern ireland's governance or influencing the style of governance of forestry it and relationships go and how does it relate to social or economic issues is it i mean social economic issues with the northern ireland are just green and orange and but i think that the feeling i mean i can only argue from a p.r. perspective but the feeling is that these parties have continued to practice the politics of encouraging people to doff their cap to those here better bred better off socially better off financially and better educated and unfortunately that has led these communities to the margins of society and experiencing the cme oppression and marginalization as well are terrible history in this place and we would say with regards to the treatment of other citizens and. to be honest it is largely in my theory it's largely a bite the critical hire the catalyst for want broke the camel's back so to speak
was the and not actionable the story felt and course that this beach the time that wasn't green and orange that was across northern ireland people that obviously not been able to give their loved ones the sendoff that they deserved they watch them die 3 window and or 3 she is trying and workable to give those up one cent of that they deserved and and obviously i'm not sure what the healing of the grieving process is for your viewers but for us here in northern ireland we bring the body home and the following day after person has passed and we spend a period of 3 days and you know what family in france talking about it and that's our hill integrating process but the p.p.s. decision on the back of that was not to have any prosecutions neither state historical perception in northern ireland that there is a cheat here place and system or 2 tiered justice system torts loyalist and unionist community that's not
a geisha and some will argue that it's tree others will argue that it's not trait i haven't ever these instances happened it adds to the perception done of have that same complaint expressed by many unionists about for example the funeral of the sheehan fein or the ira. intelligence chief bobby story people said that the government should have put into place restrictions of those who attended should have been held accountable just left this impression among the people that the government is more in favor or the institutions were in favor of the nationalist not the loyalists. well that was reflected i guess in a tweet arlene foster put out a century biol condemning the violence saying that it was taking the the focus off the real lawbreakers engine fane and of course she also argues that the chief
constable of the police service ignored not and should resign because politicians who attended this funeral would not be prosecuted but that i think is a very dangerous road to go down because again there's been an over politicization of the police in the past and it's interesting that it's now coming from from unionists in fact that are arguing got the police you know should be more or less you know arresting people at their behalf we've now much more intrusive policing board and and a more democratic way of governing the police but i don't think it's there for political parties to be saying who should be arrested and who should not that's a matter for the police but i think that's getting away from the root causes here because the root causes i think are built in people's insecurities which which happened gone away and which have been a century to buy brags that they did there will be triggers and things like the bobby story funeral and the lack of prosecutions and and things like that bring these things to the fore but i think is the only around factors the underlying factors which are really the ones that we should examine i think you know viewers outside of north are these are very familiar micro issues to people living in
arden's in northern ireland but i think to outside viewers i think that the key to take away is that you know in terms of the 2 communities there's been a shift indeed it was described as a tectonic shift by the venti shoki of rocker in in in northern ireland in in terms of electoral politics as well and that has really again because it breaks it reignited debates about the construct a constitutional future of northern ireland and i think that's at the heart of a lot of what's going on as well brian should we blame the idea of a hard bags it's called bind with a soft border with some of the confusion that is creating on the ground in northern ireland because this whole thing about the irish sea border is widely interpreted in different ways but both key players in northern ireland. well it is and i mean there is the there is an absentee hipness discussion and that's the british government and it was the british government who promised they would never be any
kind of order in the r.t.c. and burns johnson the prime minister explicitly promised that that would never happen then weeks after he became prime minister that is exactly what he did the other aspect of this is the british government is not properly operating the protocol they are going slow they are not cooperating with the european union they have been months behind in producing the sort of evidence that they should produce so they the committees are responsible for a minute giving the protocols and packed haven't even met and some kids as ormandy do mate they come to no decision because the british government actually wasn't ready to leave on the 1st of january they hadn't got the position and the customs traditions in place at the ports here and there was an initial period of 2 or 3 weeks rather shortages and. supermarkets and so on so the role of the british
government some of whose members do not want to operate it the protocol and in many rares are behaving as if they're using northern ireland sort of a bargaining chip to put pressure on the european union and get more concessions out of the european union or the role of the british government here has been very bad indeed and provoking the trouble on the streets and the disaffection among the unions community journey of the peace war has become the 3rd point of the clash happening on a daily basis in the with an island could there be an indication that the country is starting to assist lip slowly towards further violence do you have any concerns that the hope of peace could be shattered by what what is happening now. well i'm a hack i call myself the peace baby generation was born in 1987 so i was 10 years of beach when the agreement was signed so i was unable to go wouldn't have any
knowledge of toll over what it's what was what it's a bite but as i've grown older i've come to appreciate it and find wiser heads across all sections of society that pretty good friday agreement and has saved and sheltered me from experience in c.m. and torturous and terrible times that those before me experienced in northern ireland our darkest dark past as a mother to 23 year old twins or 3 year old twins i'm terrified at the prospect of a slipping back into something that you know i say i was sheltered from my parents and my grandparents experienced and went right i've never seen violence within you know this community in my lifetime as much as i did this week and. it's terrifying to thing the extent to which there is damage costs within a community the harm that it can cost people off the traumatizing of people pulling
them off a bus to set it on far bus driver commutative start to depart from the vehicle so that it could be set on fire a ruined bus that was on fire and journalists jan his job that was attacked and these are by members of my own community but what i will say on the one thing that keeps me really encouraged at this point in time is using that area of north belfast learning way that the infamous peace war now a ticket or area has a population of 802502 their bikes right on the streets that are 17500 people at home and that gives me comfort sure the vats concern is is shared by many many other northern ireland who don't want to see a return whatsoever to those somber day is over 3 decades of or a conflict donna one of the key issues in shrine in the power sharing agreement is the open borders between ireland and northern ireland could this be one of the
issues that are triggered in some of the and desire to particular among the host see this and. paving the way for them to further lose. the whole identity of northern ireland. i know an open border between both parts of ireland i don't think that was an issue indeed unionist representatives expressed. a desire to see the borders kept open the problem was that stuff was very difficult to reconcile with the type of regs that that was chosen by the do you and and their allies in the bridge conservative party in the g.o.p. had 2 and a half years off a century power without responsibility they were in government essentially with the tory government when bragg's it was being chosen and all sorts of options were put forward which which could have brought about a break so that would have been softer which would have meant less chaos and and and a very hard drugs that was chosen so essentially we're going to have northern ireland either having a border within on the island of ireland or somehow
a trade border along the irish sea and it was the british going servant of government which negotiated an agreement which has brought us to this present impossible so certainly people in that war you know advocating brags that have a responsibility to own the brakes of that has come about because the majority of people in ireland did not vote want bragg's it to happen and in a sense are collateral damage for the for what's occurring as a result of this seminal decision all right brian the last let's present it is of the loyalist local communities council. about withdrawing support for the good friday agreement should it be taken seriously by people in the audience. well i think i think it is taken seriously but. at the same time the law was community council says they're not going to get involved in any kind of violence they issued a statement saying the component parts of the consul the paramilitary groups were not involved in organizing any of the violence so so i don't think there is any
danger that they're going to return to violence or have some sort of orchestrated champion what has been happening is drive the localized i mean and absent being of a major. level of the sturgeons which tom does the community damages the economy people in belfast this morning right walking their dogs there are. relaxing and there's absolutely nothing else happening on the streets i mean they are as i say it's mostly young teenagers are a target and there is no evidence that there's anything like up slide back to the sort of trouble that existed 25 years ago there is no no guns were used there were no senior figures that are involved in our military activities directing anything journey the hope was basically in 1986 teria violence hated were just fade away and the new era of of of new to our faith trust would
prevail that does not seem to be the case because both parties remain entrenched the the 2 analogous are in conflict with each other do you think that this could be an opportunity for the loyalists and the nationalists to try use that same spirit of 1908 to build bridges once again. i think there's always where there's a will there's a way and i think one of our biggest problems isn't the agreement but what happened in spite of that there after it began was intended to share par it's intended to share responsibility but the system of governance that we have isn't the sharing of heart it's the splitting of par where we get one party one portfolio and the other another someone will look after hyson help look after education shared decision making other than at the executive what they're prepared to bring and and to be at and what they're not and as well as the programme for government so it's not necessarily representative and it holds things back i strongly advocate to sustain
a government something similar to our kind that allow each party to form many voluntary coalitions with each other and to progress their manifesto center from the promises they made to their electorate and i think there is a growing a growing feeling that we want change in northern ireland not to scratch again treasury mint but to build on an unfortunately we have to leave it there for the time being julia uncle johnston done i call behind brian finnerty thank you very much indeed for your contribution your insights thank you too for watching you can see the program again any time by visiting our website dot com for further discussion go to our facebook page that's facebook dot call for with slash a.j. incised or you can also join the conversation on twitter our handle is a j inside story for me hashem i have are on the entire team here in doha but for now.
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