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Carthy highlights importance of Peace Process for Border Communities in EU Resolution

13 November, 2014 - by Matt Carthy MEP

Speaking today after MEPs adopted a Resolution on the Peace Process by an overwhelming majority, Sinn Féin MEP Matt Carthy highlighted the impact that the Peace Process has had on border communities in particular and the need to work together to rebuild and strengthen these communities in future.

Carthy said:

“I am heartened by the overwhelming support displayed here today by our fellow MEPs from all political groupings to the continuation and strengthening of the Peace Process in the Six Counties. The European Union has played a positive role in the Peace Process and the rebuilding of our society in the aftermath of the conflict.

“Coming from a border county, and representing a constituency which spans the length of the Border, I am very aware of the significance of the continued support of the international community for the peace process, both in political terms and in financial terms through the International Fund for Ireland.

“For many people in our border towns and villages, the lives they live today are wholly unrecognisable from thirty, even twenty, years ago. Our young people are growing up in a society where violence and intimidation has all but vanished, there is growing cross border cooperation in areas which are of mutual concern and there is growing respect, tolerance and appreciation for the differences that exist within the communities on our Island.

“While there has been much progress, nevertheless there remains more to do – we need a proper mechanism in place to appropriately deal with outstanding legacy issues of the conflict and we need to work together to ensure an economic recovery that touches every corner of our island.

“No one wants to go back to the dark days of the past. Instead we must concentrate our efforts on building a brighter, modern, progressive and prosperous island for future generations – the current talks underway in Stormount are central to that aim.

"We must also evaluate, on an all-Ireland basis, how we can continue to make the border irrelevant. It is not an accident that border counties have the highest unemployment, the highest levels of poverty and the highest levels of emigration combined with the lowest levels of investment on this island. We need to create an all-Ireland economy that will allow every community to proper."

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