Salford holds Ireland forum

February 16, 1996

"Understanding the Peace Process in Ireland" is a seminar series kicking off next week at Salford University with some of the most important academics in the field alongside senior representatives of the major political parties involved in the peace process.

Organiser Jonathan Tonge of the university's European Studies Research Institute said the series had attracted a great deal of interest particularly over the last week.

"Recent events have given a new dimension to these discussions - now the question must be can there ever be peace in Northern Ireland," he said.

Dr Tonge said surprisingly little had been written in academic circles about the Irish peace process and work in progress was in danger of being overtaken by events.

He said the seminar series was the most important of its type yet undertaken in a British university, and provided a vital public forum for the discussion of the future of Northern Ireland. The first speaker on Wednesday is Eric Illsley, Labour Northern Ireland front bench spokesman. Later speakers include Brendan O'Leary of the LSE and the University of Western Ontario, Gregory Campbell of the Democratic Unionist Party, David Ervine, leader of the Progressive Unionist Party and Steve Bruce of Aberdeen University.

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