The limits of legitimacy: Former loyalist combatants and peace-building in Northern Ireland

Claire Mitchell

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    39 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    The British government has a fraught relationship with former combatants in Northern Ireland. It simultaneously benefits from former combatants’ peace-building efforts, whilst denying them statutory recognition and funding. Drawing on interviews and focus groups with politically motivated former loyalist combatants and statutory representatives in Belfast, this paper explores the complex and sometimes contradictory relationship between them. It argues that that a lack of legitimacy is the biggest obstacle to good working relationships, and that positive engagement may be crucial in order to promote the implementation of peace in the most difficult to reach and volatile constituencies in Northern Ireland.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)1-19
    Number of pages19
    JournalIrish Political Studies
    Volume23 (1)
    Publication statusPublished - 2008

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