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A History of the Northern Ireland Labour PartyDemocratic Socialism and Sectarianism$
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Aaron Edwards

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780719078743

Published to Manchester Scholarship Online: July 2012

DOI: 10.7228/manchester/9780719078743.001.0001

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The fall of the NILP, 1972–75

The fall of the NILP, 1972–75

(p.194) 6 The fall of the NILP, 1972–75
A History of the Northern Ireland Labour Party

Aaron Edwards

Manchester University Press

The Northern Ireland Labour Party (NILP) argued that although ‘Partition cannot be ended without the consent of the majority of people of Northern Ireland’ a radical alternative to internment was still badly needed. One important point to make about the NILP's submissions to the newly formed Northern Ireland Office (NIO) was that these included content dealing with social justice, which the other parties had neglected to put forward. The Ulster Workers' Council (UWC) strike united Protestant politicians and paramilitaries in opposition against the new power-sharing government. The NILP opposed strike action but was powerless to stop the popular mobilisation of workers in the key industries. Reverend John Stewart's peace-making activities serve as a stark reminder that there were NILP members prepared to take risks for peace. By the mid-1970s the NILP was left with few committed friends in the British Labour Party.

Keywords:   Northern Ireland Labour Party, Northern Ireland Office, Ulster Workers' Council, Protestant politicians, Reverend John Stewart, peace, British Labour Party

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