John Holmes

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Former British prime minister Tony Blair and former taoiseach Bertie Ahern signing the Belfast Agreement. Photograph: Reuters

When British prime minister Tony Blair left Downing Street in early April 1998 and headed for Belfast to take charge of the Northern Ireland peace tal(...)

Ulster Unionist Party leader David Trimble and Sinn Féin president Gerry Adams pass within touching distance of each other outside Castle Buildings, Stormont during a break in the negotiations before the signing of the Belfast Agreement on April 10th, 1998. File photograph: PA

How rarely we get a chance to “feel the hand of history upon our shoulder” in the life of a country. In a confidential memo authored by John Holmes,(...)

Posters in Dublin during the 2002 abortion referendum campaign. File photograph: David Sleator

It is very odd that the Citizens’ Assembly discussion of referendums has been moved to this weekend, given that it will allegedly have no impact on th(...)