Douglas Hurd

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The Birmingham Six after their release in London in 1991, with Chris Mullin (centre, with scarf) outside the Old Bailey. File photograph: Joe St Leger

A request by taoiseach Charles Haughey in 1988 for clemency for the Birmingham Six was rebuffed immediately by British prime minister Margaret Thatche(...)

Ray Houghton  heads the Republic of Ireland winner past England’s Peter Shilton during the European Championship at Stuttgart, June 12th 1988. Photograph: Bob Thomas/Getty Images

January 11th: SDLP leader John Hume and Sinn Féin president Gerry Adams hold the first in a series of secretive meetings in Belfast. January 17th: Au(...)

Sinn Féin president Gerry Adams reaches out for a supporter’s hand at a conference in New York in 1994. Photograph: Hai Do/AFP/Getty Images

Former UK prime minister John Major was so furious with Bill Clinton over the US government’s decision to grant Gerry Adams a travel visa in 1994, he (...)

Tánaiste John Wilson. Photograph: Peter Thursfield

An uncleared visit by an Irish government minister to Northern Ireland in 1992 angered British officials, according to previously confidential files r(...)

The president Mrs Mary Robinson with Queen Elizabeth at Buckingham Palace. Photograph: Eric Luke

A historic courtesy call by president Mary Robinson on Queen Elizabeth II features in this year’s declassified Stormont files, released by the Public (...)

Irish-British relations are about to undergo their biggest change since the 1970s, and arguably since Independence. The two states will remain close a(...)

British secretary of state Douglas Hurd first raised UDR’s credibility. Photograph: Frank Miller

The image and activities of the Ulster Defence Regiment proved an increasingly embarrassing issue for the British government in the run-up to and afte(...)

Taoiseach Enda Kenny: Advocating for the best possible deal for the British is likely to be Ireland’s strategy in exit negotiations

When European leaders gathered in Milan in June 1985, both Ireland and the European project were on the brink of dramatic change. The Anglo-Irish Agre(...)

Lord Robert Armstrong, cabinet secretary under Mrs Thatcher and one of  key negotiators of the  agreement,  at an event marking the agreement’s 30th anniversary in  Trinity College Dublin last November. Photograph: Eric Luke

During the framing of the historic Anglo-Irish Agreement of November 1985, Garret FitzGerald took the opportunity of a joint meeting in Lisbon to comp(...)

The late DUP leader  Ian Paisley: said he had urged SDLP leader John Hume to start talking with other political leaders. Photograph: Matt Kavanagh/The Irish Times

The late Democratic Unionist Party leader Rev Ian Paisley was rebuked by Northern Ireland secretary of state Douglas Hurd in 1984 after Dr Paisley ha(...)

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