On April 10, 1998, The Good Friday Agreement was signed. The document was designed to address the relationships of political parties within Northern Ireland and the relationship between the British and Irish governments. The agreement emerged from a long and difficult process. One of the key players was former U.S. Senator George Mitchell.
Talking recently about the tenth anniversary of the accord in a National Public Radio interview, Mitchell acknowledged how difficult it had been to reach agreement among parties who had been in conflict for many years. The troubles in Northern Ireland had led to many deaths over the years and efforts to sabotage previous agreements that created a foundation for The Good Friday Agreement were common. The entrenched distrust and hatred of many involved was well-known throughout the world.
The Good Friday Agreement was not perfect and did not end all conflict among the parties. But it did allow these combatants to construct a framework for further progress. Mitchell said the historic agreement showed that there is no conflict that can’t be resolved.