What can Israelis & Palestinians learn from Northern Ireland? | DW News

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    No doubt the Israeli-Palestinian conflict counts as one of the world’s most entrenched and its appears resilient to reconciliation. But Gary Mason says an end to conflict – even in the most hopeless situations – is possible.

    Gary Mason is a Methodist minister from Belfast in Northern Ireland. He played an important role in the Northern Irish Peace Process which resulted in the 1998 Good Friday Agreement. Since then he has continued to work for peace at home and has expanded his reconciliation efforts abroad. His work has been recognized by Queen Elizabeth and former US President Bill Clinton.

    In 2015 he founded the non-profit Rethinking Conflict. According to its website, the organization seeks to model the principles of the historic Good Friday Agreement and apply them to more fractured edges of society.

    Last year he brought Israelis, Palestinians and Northern Irish people together for a Zoom virtual meeting.

    He spoke with DW about the parallels between the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and the Troubles in Northern Ireland, and what lessons can be drawn from the peace that was reached in the Good Friday Agreement.

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    In This Story: Ireland

    Ireland is an island in the North Atlantic. It is separated from Great Britain to its east by the North Channel, the Irish Sea, and St George’s Channel.

    Geopolitically, Ireland is divided between the Republic of Ireland (officially named Ireland), which covers five-sixths of the island, and Northern Ireland, which is part of the United Kingdom. As of 2016, 4.8 million people live in the Republic of Ireland, and 1.8 million live in Northern Ireland.

    The Irish climate is influenced by the Atlantic Ocean and thus very moderate, and winters are milder than expected for such a northerly area, although summers are cooler than those in continental Europe. Rainfall and cloud cover are abundant.

    A strong Irish culture exists, as expressed through Gaelic games, Irish music and the Irish language. The island’s culture shares many features with that of Great Britain, including the English language, and sports such as association football, rugby, horse racing, and golf.

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    Northern Ireland is variously described as a country, province, or region, which is part of the United Kingdom. Located in the northeast of the island of Ireland, Northern Ireland shares a border to the south and west with the Republic of Ireland.

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