Patrick Mayhew

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Sinn Féin president Gerry Adams being applauded by delegates   after addressing the opening session of the Forum for Peace and Reconciliation at Dublin Castle in 1991. Photograph: Frank Miller

A decision by president Mary Robinson to meet Gerry Adams during a visit to west Belfast in 1993 was vehemently opposed by then Northern Ireland secre(...)

Ian Paisley jnr: in 1994 he told Larry Robinson that the DUP would be happy to re-enter the talks process at Stormont “provided that the Hume-Adams talks were ended” and the Republic made a firm commitment to a referendum on articles 2 and 3.  Photograph: PA Wire

Revealing insights into the thinking of several Northern Ireland politicians was provided to the British government by a London-based American diploma(...)

Sinn Féin president Gerry Adams is applauded by delegates including taoiseach Albert Reynolds after addressing the Forum for Peace and Reconciliation in Dublin Castle in October 1994. Photograph: Frank Miller/The Irish Times

Newly-declassified documents have shed new light on Britain’s failed attempts to stop the Clinton administration issuing a visa to allow Sinn Féin lea(...)

Jean Kennedy-Smith: she was seen in diplomatic eyes, particularly in London, as providing Clinton’s “eyes and ears” in the Irish scene. Photograph: Getty Images

British interest in the appointment of Jean Kennedy-Smith as US ambassador in Dublin in 1993 emerges in this year’s previously confidential files rele(...)

Northern Ireland secretary Sir Patrick Mayhew and  Tánaiste Dick Spring. Photograph: Alan Betson/The Irish Times

Northern secretary Patrick Mayhew was berated by the Orange Order at a private meeting in Belfast in 1993 after he said the behaviour of Orangemen on (...)

Patrick Mayhew. Photograph: Frank Miller

Among the most controversial politicians of 1988 was then British attorney general Patrick Mayhew. On January 20th that year, Irish diplomat Richard R(...)

File photo from September 1994 of former priest Patrick Ryan whose extradition to the UK had been sought by Margaret Thatcher’s government. Photograph: Martin McCullough/PA Wire

A furious British prime minister Margaret Thatcher rounded on taoiseach Charles Haughey for delays in extraditing Fr Patrick Ryan – an Irish priest wa(...)

 Mo Mowlam with her portrait painted by artist John Keane in 2002  at the National Portrait Gallery in  London. Photograph: Kirsty Wigglesworth / PA

How important can a wig toss on a Monday, a hug on a Tuesday, and an expletive on a Wednesday really be to a peace process? Some people may argue not (...)

Bill Clinton:  British diplomat Jonathan Powell conceded years later that the president’s  decision to grant Adams a visa-waiver in 1994 was the right thing to do. Photograph: Getty Images

Gerry Adams arrived at Kennedy Airport in New York at 4.30pm on Monday, January 31st, 1994, on Aer Lingus flight 105 from Dublin. Previously denied ac(...)

Sir David Goodall, who died in 2016, was a key architect of the Anglo-Irish Agreement. Photograph: Joanne O’Brien

The late British diplomat Sir David Goodall features in a candid profile by a Northern Irish Office (NIO) official in this year’s files releases from (...)

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