Press Releases

PRESS RELEASE : Prime Minister begins second week of Belfast (Good Friday) Agreement Commemorations [April 2023]

The press release issued by 10 Downing Street on 16 April 2023.

  • Prime Minister will enter second week of events to mark the 25th anniversary of the Belfast (Good Friday) Agreement.
  • He will pay tribute to the “courage, imagination and perseverance” of those who worked for peace and had the personal courage to keep going.
  • Inspiring young people born in or after 1998 will be welcomed to a Gala Dinner hosted by the Prime Minister in Northern Ireland on Wednesday evening.
  • The agreement’s architects, signatories and their families – as well as political leaders, international dignitaries and leading charities – will also attend.

The Prime Minister will begin his second week of events to mark a quarter of a century since the Belfast (Good Friday) Agreement was signed.

He will travel back to Belfast on Wednesday where he will acknowledge the “courage, imagination and perseverance” of those who engineered and supported the agreement, as part of the closing keynote speech at the Queen’s University’s ‘Agreement 25’ conference.

As part of the Gala Dinner that evening, he will host the remarkable young people who have made a real change to their communities by demonstrating the spirit of the agreement. This younger generation of volunteers make an outstanding contribution to promoting reconciliation through integrated education, sport, the arts and community service.

The Prime Minister will also meet with key architects of the agreement, along with Irish and US representatives where he will acknowledge the unique moment in our nation’s history.

Next week’s visit will be the Prime Minister’s fifth to Northern Ireland since he has been in office, making it one of his most visited locations.

The Prime Minister said:

This week we continue to acknowledge the courage, imagination and perseverance of those who built the Belfast (Good Friday) Agreement. It gives me great pleasure to meet with some of the leading architects of peace and to commemorate those who are no longer with us.

It is a tribute to the 1998 Agreement that we also see a younger generation of inspirational people across Northern Ireland today. Those who volunteer time and effort to actively make their communities stronger.

So this week I will also pay tribute to young people who have continued to heal the wounds of a dark and difficult past, and those who came before them and set the groundwork for a better future.

The agreement continues to enjoy huge international support and the days ahead will see a spotlight on the peace, prosperity and economic opportunity which have ensued from the commitment in 1998. This week will provide further opportunity to reflect and discuss the ongoing transformation and progress across communities in Northern Ireland.

Queen’s University’s ‘Agreement 25’ conference will start on Monday and include speeches, panel discussions, plenary sessions and collaborative events from former and current political leaders.

The Gala Dinner will round off the recent period of events to commemorate the anniversary and strengthen efforts to support our vision for a prosperous 25 years ahead.

This follows President Biden’s visit to Belfast last week where the Prime Minister and the President celebrated the progress that Northern Ireland has made over the last quarter of a century and recommitted to building an even brighter future for Northern Ireland.