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РозділІноземна мова, реферати англійською, німецькою
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Moscow 1998                        

          The Irish Question

State Pedagogical University

                 Snigir Aleksei

The Plan:

1. The position of Northern Ireland within the   United Kingdom

2. British policy towards Northern Ireland

3. Theories of political violence in the Northern Ireland conflict


I The Position of Northern Ireland within the United Kingdom

The inhabitants of Ireland are mainly Celtic by origin, and the majority
never accepted the Reformation.  In 1801 a new law added Ireland to the
United Kingdom.  By this time much of the land belonged to Protestant
English landlords, and the Act of Union followed the period in which
rebellions peasants were brutally suppressed.  But in the six Northern
Counties the Protestants were not a dominant minority: they were the
majority of the population.  Most of them were descendants of Scottish
and English settlers who had moved into Ireland several generations
before.  They considered themselves to be Irish but remained as a
distinct community, and there was not much intermarriage.  There had
been conflicts and battles between the two communities, still remembered
along with their heroes and martyrs.

In 1912, when the liberals were in power, with the support of the main
group of Irish MPs  (for Ireland had seats in the UK parliament).  The
House of Commons passed a Home Rule Bill, but the House of Lords delayed
it.  It was bitterly opposed by the Protestant majority of the people in
the six northern counties and by the M Ps they had elected.  They did
not want to be included in a self-governing Ireland dominated by

Eventually, the island was partitioned.  In 1922 the greater part became
an independent state, and (in 1949) a republic outside the Commonwealth.
Its laws, on divorce and other matters, reflect the influence of the
Catholic Church. The six northern counties remained within the United
Kingdom, with seats in Prime Minister and government responsible for
internal affairs. In the politics of Northern Ireland the main factor
has always been the hostility between Protestants and Catholics

Until 1972 the Northern Irish Parliament (called Stormont) always had a
Protestant majority.  By 1960s Catholics produced serious riots.  The
police were mainly Protestants.  They used their guns.  Several people
were killed.  The UK Labour government of the time had sympathy with the
Catholics grievances.  The Protestant parties regularly supported the
Conservatives, while some MPs elected for Catholic parties took little
or no part in the work of the Parliament.

In 1969 the UK Labour Government sent troops to Northern Ireland, with
others to help impartially to keep order.  But to most Catholics UK
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