Timeline of Recent Unrest, Sectarianism, Paramilitary Activity and Developments in the Peace Process

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Developments March 2009 - December 2010
Developments 2011
Developments 2012
Developments 2013
Developments 2014
Developments 2015
Developments 2016
Developments 2018

December 2016 January 2017 February 2017
March 2017
April 2017
May 2017
June 2017
July 2017
August 2017 September 2017 October 2017 November 2017
December 2017 Latest

January 2017

1st éirígí said in their New Year statement that their focus for 2017 would be opposing 'the privatisation and commodification of housing'. The Republican Network for Unity said 'we as revolutionary republicans must this year strive to present an alternative to constitutionalism, we must gain the support of the majority of the people of this island to make our goals and ambitions a reality'.

A foreign national was subject to a 'racially motivated hate crime' in Belfast city centre.

2nd Tyrone manager Mickey Harte said that the GAA could stop playing the Irish national anthem and flying the tricolour at matches 'when the time is right'.

5th Police appealed for witnesses to come forward over the UDA murder of Brian McIlhagga which had occurred two years previously.

6th In the Turf Lodge area of west Belfast, a man was shot in both legs. Speaking for the SDLP, Alex Attwood said 'there is a new tyranny emerging - drug pushing on one hand and violent attacks on the other. Many in west Belfast know the scale of the threat, the impact on our community and the risks for our young people in particular. People and police must together confront these criminal and violent forces.' The Northern Ireland Secretary James Brokenshire said 'I am sickened by news of the punishment-style shooting in Belfast last night - a cowardly act of violence that has no place in our society'.

Homes were evacuated in Magherafelt after a hoax alert.

A judge revoked the bail of Damien McLaughlin, due to stand trial over the murder of prison officer David Black.

8th Garryduff Independent Orange Hall on Garryduff Road was damaged in an arson attack.

9th Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness resigned from his position in government over the RHI renewable energy scandal. He was also in poor health.

The family of murdered prison officer David Black said that they felt 'betrayed by the justice system'. Damien McLaughlin, who had been due to stand trial, had been released on bail and had gone missing.

10th MPs were briefed on the situation after the departure of Martin McGuinness. First Minister Arlene Foster of the DUP, whose resignation had been forced by that of McGuinness, said that she was willing to open talks with Sinn Féin to prevent a collapse of power sharing. British Prime Minister Theresa May discussed the crisis with Taoiseach Enda Kenny. An assembly election looked to be highly likely.

11th Sinn Féin said they were 'not interested' in crisis talks. However, Enda Kenny suggested that Sinn Féin and DUP were willing to consider a meeting.

The SDLP announced that they would back British-Irish rule if devolution failed, but not direct rule from Britain. Colum Eastwood said 'we cannot allow a DUP-run government to be solely replaced by British direct rule ministers. Theresa May, the British secretary of state [James Brokenshire] and the DUP need to understand that there can be no return to what has gone before.'

12th Funding was found for the Líofa Gaeltacht Bursary Scheme. McGuinness had said that a major cut to the scheme had been part of the reason for his resignation.

Jeremy Corbyn, leader of the British Labour Party, said that he would oppose direct rule.

Óglaigh na hÉireann shot and injured the parents of a youth who they had intended to target in a punishment attack. The shooting was widely condemned.

13th It was reported that Northern Ireland's Finance Minister Máirtín Ó Muilleoir was challenging a 280-year-old ban on Irish being spoken in courts. Disagreements over the official use of Irish language had been part of the tensions between Sinn Féin and the DUP.

14th It was reported that threats had been made against a family member of the couple shot by Óglaigh na hÉireann.

Brians Well Road in west Belfast was shut during a security alert. Police said later that they had found a device that was designed to kill.

15th The Police Federation of Northern Ireland expressed fears that post-Brexit border posts would be a propaganda gift and a target for republicans opposed to the peace process.

Northern Ireland Secretary of State James Brokenshire said that he was not considering any alternatives to devolved government. However, Sinn Féin confirmed that they would not be putting forward a candidate to replace Martin McGuinness.

16th With deadlock at Stormont, an election was announced. The DUP accused Sinn Féin of forcing the election.

17th After British Prime Minister Theresa May's announcement that the UK would leave the European Single Market, Sinn Féin said that this would create a hard border in Ireland.

James Brokenshire said that the British government remained committed to the Good Friday Agreement.

It was reported that the families of three Scottish soldiers killed by the PIRA were taking action to get justice. The men's killers were believed to be living freely in the Republic.

18th It was reported that paramilitary-style shootings had doubled in west Belfast during 2016.

A 'viable device' was found during a security alert in Dungannon.

19th It was announced that Martin McGuinness would not stand for re-election.

Sinn Féin threatened to pull out of the Joint Ministerial Council over concerns about negotiations for the UK to leave the EU.

Facebook confirmed that it had removed a list of people accused of anti-social behaviour after a series of punishment shootings.

20th The DUP's Ian Paisley thanked Martin McGuinness, saying his 'remarkable journey not only saved lives but made the lives of countless people better'.

21st Gerry Adams said that Brexit would be a 'hostile action' that would destroy the peace deal. 'The British prime minister repeated her intention to bring an end to the jurisdiction of the European court. Along with her commitment to remove Britain from the European convention on human rights, this stand threatens to undermine the fundamental human rights elements of the Good Friday agreement.'

A man who had been arrested over Facebook posts that had made serious allegations about some people in west Belfast was released on bail. The list named people suspected of being part of a joyriding gang in the Turf Lodge area. The list had been linked to punishment shootings.

The Guardian reported on the 'uneasy peace' in Northern Ireland, focusing on Portadown.

22nd The UK government rejected Gerry Adam's comments on Brexit and the Good Friday Agreement. It said there would be 'no return to the borders of the past'.

A police officer was shot and injured during a drive-by attack in north Belfast.

23rd Police called the shooting of one of their officers 'reckless madness'.

Michelle O'Neill was named as the new Sinn Féin leader. According to The Guardian, 'while her father served prison sentences for IRA offences during the Northern Ireland Troubles, Michelle O’Neill has no such baggage and represents a break with the republican movement’s violent past'.

The Police Federation said that a hard border between North and South would put their officers at risk.

24th Two men were arrested and one released over the shooting of a police officer two days previously.

25th The New IRA claimed the shooting of a police officer on the Crumlin Road.

A gun was found in a bin in west Belfast.

A deceased soldier from the Parachute Regiment, Allan McVitie, was named as the man who shot dead father-of-six Henry Thornton, a van driver, in 1971.

Eamon de Valera's grave, in Glasnevin Cemetery, Dublin, was vandalised.

26th It was reported that republicans Colin Duffy, Henry Fitzsimons and Alex McCrory would be facing trial over paramilitary offences. The charges related to an attack on 5th December 2013.

27th Conservative MP Bob Stewart admitted to having been 'a kind of torturer' during the Troubles. He said that torture was sometimes justified, and can work.

28th A pipe bomb was found during an alert at Earhart Park in Derry.

Northern Ireland Secretary James Brokenshire argued that the Troubles inquiry was focusing too much on the police and army. Numerous former soldiers were facing prosecutions over killings. Brokenshire said that 'I am clear the current system is not working and we are in danger of seeing the past rewritten. It is also clear the current focus is disproportionately on those who worked for the state [...] the vast majority of whom served in Northern Ireland with great courage, professionalism and distinction'.

James Brokenshire became the first secretary of state to attend a gaelic football match in Northern Ireland. He was lately criticised for 'snubbing' the Irish national anthem.

30th It was reported that a gun used to injure a police officer the week before had been used in a previous attack on police.

British Prime Minister Theresa May warned Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales that they would have no veto on Brexit. The taoiseach, Enda Kenny, spelled out fears over a 'hard border' with the North. May said that she wantd a 'seamless, frictionless border'.

Irish foreign minister Charlie Flanagan said Dublin did not look favourably on any proposed amnesty for either 'state or non-state actors'.

An appeal by republican 'Slab' Murphy against his sentence for tax evasion was dismissed.

31st Bombardier called for a swift resolution to the Stormont crisis.

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February 2017

1st The secretary of state, James Brokenshire, ruled out the possibility of Northern Ireland having special status after Brexit.

Tributes were paid to Margaret McKinney, a founder of the Families for the Disappeared, who had died aged 85. Her son Brian had been killed by the IRA in 1978.

2nd The BBC cited figures that challenged claims that investigations into Troubles killings were unduly focused on those committed by the army. The DUP had said that up to 90% of PSNI legacy investigations involved killings by the army, but PSNI figures showed it was about 30%.

3rd Royal Marine Ciaran Maxwell pleaded guilty to stashing explosives in preparation for an attack. The Guardian reported that 'Maxwell, who grew up in the predominantly Protestant unionist town of Larne, used the cover of being a British marine to aid Irish republican dissidents opposed to peace and power-sharing in Northern Ireland'.

A bomb was found in the garden of a house in Kinnaird Street, North Belfast.

5th Gerry Adams said he would visit the White House if invited for St.Patrick's Day. Earlier in the week, Sinn Féin's leader at Stormont, Michelle O'Neill, had said that an invitation to President Trump to visit Northern Ireland was no longer appropriate. However, Trump said that St Patrick's Day was about Ireland, not Mr Trump.

Shots were fired at a house in Newtownabbey.

6th Arlene Foster of the DUP said that her party would never agree to an Irish language act. She said it would be better to have a Polish language act because more people in Northern Ireland spoke Polish.

Patrick Brennan was jailed in Dublin after being caught with high grade explosives and three detonators on a bus.

7th John Mason of the SNP said he was sorry for a tweet about IRA 'freedom fighters'.

8th It was reported that a European Arrest Warrant had been obtained for Damien McLaughlin, wanted on charges relating to the killing of David Black.

The Conradh na Gaeilge began an action over the executive's failure to adopt an Irish language strategy.

Dan Mulhall, Irish ambassador to the UK, said it would be impossible to monitor the numerous crossing points on the Irish border after Brexit.

9th A planned march by military veteran in Derry was cancelled. Veterans for Justic UK had wanted to 'highlight injustices against soldiers'.

The Public Prosecution Service announced its decision not to prosecute a man over the Kingsmill massacre. A palm print found on a van used in the murders was believed to belong to him.

Three suspect devices were made safe in Naas.

11th Bertie Ahern argued that the Northern Ireland peace process had been put at risk by Brexit. He said that British Prime Minister Theresa May 'seems to be switching her language. She's saying not that there'll be no border, but that the border won't be as difficult as to create problems. I worry far more about what's going to happen with that. It will take away the calming effects [of an open border]. Any attempt to try to start putting down border posts, or to man [it] in a physical sense as used to be the case, would be very hard to maintain, and would create a lot of bad feeling.'

13th Irish foreign minister Charlie Flanagan warned that human rights protections under the Good Friday Agreement were 'inviolable' and could not be altered by Brexit.

14th A man was left in a critical condition after being shot in County Armagh.

It was reported that the former British Prime Minister Edward Heath had been linked to the Hooded Men torture decision.

The Northern Ireland Secretary James Brokenshire rejected calls to step aside as chair of cross-party talks after the assembly election. Both Sinn Féin and the SDLP had claimed that his recent comments on the legacy of the Troubles meant he could not be an honest broker in any negotiations.

15th A man was shotin the legs on the Falls Road in Belfast.

The Taoiseach Enda Kenny said it was a matter of vital national interest that there was no return to a hard border on the island of Ireland when the UK left the EU.

Belfast High Court heard that the torture of the Hooded Men was 'on the scale of a war crime'.

16th The court in Belfast heard that one of the Hooded Men had been bitten by a soldier's dog.

A 16-year-old boy was wounded in a gun attack. The police called it 'child abuse'.

An application to hold the trial of Damien McLaughlin in his absence was adjourned. McLaughlin was accused of the shooting of prison officer David Black.

17th It was reported that Belfast's Jewish community had been subject to racist abuse online.

Judgement was reserved in the Hooded Men case.

18th The BBC reported on the rise of contemporary art murals in Belfast. Meanwhile, the Guardian reported that punk bands were demanding recognition for uniting Catholics and Protestants during the Troubles.

A protest against Brexit halted traffic at the Irish border.

19th Masked men entered a house in Coleraine and shot a man and his mother.

20th The DUP launched their election manifesto, warning that a victory in the Assembly election could give Sinn Féin a 'hugely significant worldwide propaganda boost'.

21st Pipe bombs and ammunition linked to the INLA were discovered on Conway Street, west Belfast.

Pat Finucane's family lost their appeal against the British government's decision not to hold a public inquiry into his murder.

22nd British Prime Minister Theresa May attacked claims that she had 'made a business of dragging soldiers through the courts over incidents in Northern Ireland'.

The SDLP's Colum Eastwood said that power-sharing was at stake in the Assembly election.

A device was found outside the house of a police officer in Derry. The PSNI blamed 'violent dissident republicans'. The bomb later exploded while they were trying to defuse it.

23rd The European Commmission president said that he agreed with the Irish government that Brexit shoud not bring back a 'hard' Northern Ireland border.

24th The DUP admitted to spending £425,000 on their pro-Brexit campaign, including £282,000 on an advert that did not run in Northern Ireland.

26th The Financial Services Union warned that jobs in the sector could be put at risk by continued political instability in Northern Ireland.

27th The PSNI failed in their appeal against an order to disclose police documents related to two murder attempts on Catholic taxi driver John Flynn.

Former Secretary of State Peter Hain said that Brexit put the Northern Ireland peace process at risk. He was 'not convinced the government has begun to even grasp the political significance' of reintroducing border controls. Hain had introduced an amendment to the bill which authorised the government to trigger the process of leaving the EU, arguing for the maintenance of an open border.

28th Sinn Féin defended having sent a leaflet to schoolchildren. It had been part of a campaign for better broadband.

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March 2017

2nd Damien McLaughlin, who had gone missing after being released on bail, appeared in a Dublin court accused of the murder of prison officer David Black.

A Department of Education review accused Stormont on failing to lead the way in integrated education.

An election was held for the Northern Ireland Assembly. The DUP managed 28 seats and Sinn Féin 27, while the UUP's share of the vote declined. It was the first time that unionists no longer held the majority at Stormont.

3rd A High Court judge ruled that the Stormont Executive had failed in its legal duty to adopt an Irish language strategy.

Mike Nesbitt stepped down as UUP leader.

4th Shots were fired through the window of a property in Dungiven.

5th Three men were charged after a gun was found in Enniskillen.

6th Gerry Adams said that the family of Martin McGuinness had asked for privacy among reports of the former Deputy First Minister's failing health.

A police officer spoke about being shot at a petrol station in Belfast. He said 'blood was pouring out. I thought that was me. I thought I was going to die on that forecourt'. An appeal went out on Crimewatch.

8th Irish foreign minister Charlie Flanagan met NI Secretary James Brokenshire. He warned that talks to restore Stormont's institutions were operating under a 'tight time frame'.

9th The Council of Europe reported that an Irish language act is a necessity prevented by 'sectarian politics'.

The NI Secretary James Brokenshire said that Northern Ireland could face another election if no agreement on restoring the devolved government was reached within three weeks.

10th Sinn Féin President Gerry Adams said that the Northern Ireland Assembly election result had shown that Irish unity was achievable.

11th An opinion poll in the Republic showed a rise in support for Sinn Féin.

A doorman was
attacked with a fire extinguisher at a bar in Carrickfergus. The atttack was linked to an ongoing paramilitary feud.

12th Fintan O'Toole argued in the Guardian that a Northern Irish identity with no sectarian markers was arising after Brexit.

DUP leader Arlene Foster said she 'did not consider resigning' after the Assembly election.

13th A high-profile loyalist, George Gilmore, was shot in the neck in Carrickfergus.

Michelle O'Neil, leader of Sinn Féin in the North, called for a referendum on Irish unity 'as soon as possible'.

14th In a letter to army veterans, British Prime Minister Theresa May said that the system of addressing the legacy of the past in Northern Ireland was 'unbalanced'. In her view investigations should focus 'much more on the hundreds of unsolved murders committed by terrorists'. On the same day she argued that it was the wrong time for a broder poll, and the focus should be on talks to restore Stormont.

15th Loyalist George Gilmore died after being shot. The PSNI said it was working hard to avoid reprisal attacks.

16th Outgoing UUP leader Mike Nesbitt said his decision to give his second-preference vote to the SDLP did not hurt his party.

Relatives of men killed in the Kingsmills massacre accused the Republic of Ireland authorities of failing them in the search for justice. They said that both the government and the Irish police had paid 'mere lip service' to the idea of handing over information about the murders.

17th Two pipe bombs exploded at two separate houses in Bushmills, Co. Antrim, just before one in the morning.

The BBC reported the views of Irish unity among border-based Protestants. Opinions were mixed. Rev David Latimer said that 'I would have to say any talk of the border on the northern side injects my co-religionists with fear, so therefore I think we have to be careful. In contrast, you come over here to east Donegal and the border is never mentioned.'

Two men were charged over the murder of loyalist George Gilmore.

Police said they would be treating as a hate crime the defacement of a Belfast memorial to an Irish Zionist who fought in the First World War.

18th The two men accused of murdering George Gilmore appeared in court.

19th After the Taoiseach, Enda Kenny, said he agreed that there would be no return to direct rule, British Prime Minister Theresa May stressed that maintaining political stability in Northern Ireland was a UK responsibility.

Another man was arrested over the murder of George Gilmore.

20th Gerry Adams urged the Taoiseach Enda Kenny to stand up for Ireland over Brexit. He said Kenny needed 'to act accordingly and stand up for our national interests across the island, at European level, to secure special designated status for the north within the EU. That is the consensus of the majority of parties north and south. If the British government succeeds in its plans, it will drive part of Ireland out of the European Union. That is not acceptable.'

Ex-soldier Dennis Hutchings appeared in court in Armagh over the killing of a man with learning difficulties in 1974. He was accused of firing his gun three times at John-Pat Cunningham, who was unarmed, as he ran from an army patrol.

21st Former IRA leader and Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness died of an illness.

A bomb exploded in Tyrone in an attempt to kill police officers. The PSNI said that its officers had been lucky to escape with their lives. The bomb was later described as 'a roadside bomb with a command wire attached'.

22nd Former chief constable Hugh Orde said that Martin McGuinness' denunciation of republicans opposed to the peace process as 'traitors' had been 'one of the most extraordinary experiences' of his career.

23rd Gerry Adams opposed an extension to talks aimed at forming a new Northern Ireland Executive.

Two boys were injured when a petrol bomb was thrown into a house in Craigavon.

24th The Guardian warned about the effect of Brexit on Northern Ireland.

25th Sinn Féin said that the current phase of Northern Ireland inter-party discussions at Stormont Castle had run its course.

27th A man was shot in the leg outside a bookmaker's shop in Creggan.

Former first minister Arlene Foster blamed Sinn Féin for the stalled Northern Ireland talks. The Northern Ireland secretary James Brokenshire said that there would not be a snap election. They was a short window of opportunity for the two main parties to reach a deal over power sharing.

28th James Brokenshire said in front of the House of Commons that the UK government would consider all options after Easter, including direct rule if talked to form a Northern Ireland Executive failed.

Dorothy Johnson failed in her bid to overturn a decision not to order a fresh tribunal into the 1988 'Good Samaritan' bombing, in which her father died.

The Brexit Secretary David Davis clarified that a border poll in favour of a United Ireland would result in NI joining the EU.

Two men who had been detained over the bomb in Strabane the previous week were

29th British Prime Minister Theresa May said she wanted a 'frictionless' Irish border. She also said that the Tories were not neutral on Northern Ireland remaining part of the UK. 'We have a preference that Northern Ireland should remain part of the United Kingdom and we will never be neutral in expressing our support for that and that's because I believe fundamentally in the strength of our union.'

31st Northern Ireland Secretary James Brokenshire said that he did not see a role for an independent mediator in the next round of Stormont talks.

A man was charged with attempted murder and possession of explosives related to a January incident in Irvinestown, Co. Fermanagh.

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April 2017

1st A man appeared in court over a bomb at Irvinestown on January 30th.

3rd Ian Paisley Junior said he would raise the issue of his father's bugging in parliament. Former British Prime Minister Tony Blair denied that Paisley's phone had been bugged.

Party leaders met at Stormont. They had already missed one deadline for forming a power-sharing executive. Secretary of State James Brokenshire created a new deadline of 18th April, when Westminster returned from the Easter recess.

5th Sinn Féin's Michelle O'Neill said that talks aimed at establishing a new Northern Ireland Executive had made no progress.

7th Houses were evacuated over a security alert in Azalea Gardens, Twinbrook, in west Belfast. Controlled explosions were carried out on a car which had been linked to a robbery in Dunmurray. Houses were also evacuated in east Belfast but nothing suspicious was found.

9th The Archbishop of Armagh, Eamon Martin, told worshippers that there was still hope of finding the remains of the Disappeared.

10th A coronor ruled that 15-year-old Manus Deery, who had been shot dead by the British army in 1972, had been innocent.

Ammunition and a handgun were seized by police in Cookstown, County Tyrone. Their condition suggested they had been buried for years.

Sinn Féin's Michelle O'Neill said they wanted an election if talks failed to form an exeutive by the 14th. The DUP responded by accusing Sinn Féin of not being serious about meeting the deadline.

A security alert occurred at Belfast's Gasworks.

11th The Guardian reported that Stakeknife, a key British agent inside the IRA, had been linked to 18 murders and was provided an alibi by a senior police officer to prevent his arrest. It emerged on the BBC that the deputy directory of the Public Prosecutions Service, Pamea Atchison, had been asked to stay away from a decision not to prosecute Freddie Scappaticci for perjury.

It was reported that Stormont talks would take a break for Easter and resume afterwards, extending the deadline.

12th Secretary of State James Brokenshire warned that if no agreement was reached at Stormont by early May, there would either be an election or direct rule.

The Guardian warned that Britain was not taking the Irish dimension in Brexit seriously enough.

A Polish family was targetted in a 'hate crime attack'.

13th Sinn Féin welcomed Arlene Foster of the DUP's decision to meet Irish speakers. She had said she was willing to 'listen to and engage with those from the Gaelic Irish background, those without the party political background'.

14th A senior DUP negotiator suggested that James Brokenshire wanted the partial transfer of some devolved government departments back to London if discussions 'ran out of road'.

British veterans protested against what they saw as a disproportionate emphasis on prosecuting former soldiers over killings in the conflict.

A man escaped injury after a shot was fired at him in Dungannon.

15th UUP leader Robin Swann said that Arlene Foster of the DUP had made a unionist election pact more difficult by outlining the DUP's position in a newspaper article.

It was reported that the surge in people applying for Irish passports had continued, with Brexit considered a large factor.

16th An attack on two Latvian men in Coalisland was described as a hate crime.

17th Republicans opposed to the peace process held a rally in Derry, attended by about two thousand people. The UUP criticised the PSNI's failure to make any arrests.

Gregory Campbell of the DUP expressed anger over Martin McGuinness's gravestone, which described him as an IRA volunteer. Campbell said 'a volunteer in Irish republican parlance didn't work in a charity shop, they terrorised people'.

DUP MP Sir Jeffrey Donaldson said he believed Northern Ireland was 'heading towards direct rule'.

19th After British Prime Minister Theresa May declared a snap general election, SDLP leader Colum Eastwood accused her of throwing 'a grenade into the middle of the our peace process'.

20th Ian Paisley of the DUP said that police officers who killed IRA member Colum Marks 26 years ago should be given a medal rather than investigated. Sinn Féin described his comments as 'disgusting'.

21st A new deadline of 29th June was set for Northern Ireland politicians to restore a power-sharing executive.

Nick Clegg, former British deputy prime minister, described the UK's approach to a border between Northern Ireland and the Republic as 'illogical nonsense'. In his view the border of a country that was inside a customs union and a neighbour outisde of it would require checks in place.

22nd The UUP declared that they would not be running candidates in three constituencies during the election: North Belfast, West Belfast and Foyle.

Shortly before midnight, a sizeable bomb was found next to the Holy Cross boys' primary school in north Belfast. It was claimed that it had been an attempt to murder police.

23rd The British Observer asked whether Brexit would reopen old wounds with a new border.

24th An inquest into the killing of Bernard Watt, shot by soldiers during a riot in February 1971, heard that he was 'about to throw a bomb'. However, next day they heard there was no evidence that he was holding an explosive device.

25th A court heard that Stephen Paul Lynch, charged after a burning car was abandoned in Larne, had links to the UVF.

26th DUP leader Arlene Foster was reported to have said 'thank you' in Irish during a school visit.

A Westminster committee said that soldiers and police officers should not be prosecuted in relation to historical killings and torture.

27th After the DUP met a number of Irish language groups at Stormont, the TUV leader, Jim Allister, accused them of 'genuflecting to the Irish Language brigade'.

A coroner ruled that lethal force had not been justified in the case of Bernard Watts.

Stormont talks were suspended until the Westminster election had taken place. The election was scheduled for June 8th.

28th A court heard that former Sinn Féin councillor Jonathan Dowdall had been filmed torturing a man who had come to his house to buy a motorcycle. The victim was a convicted fraudster.

With European leaders due to discuss how Northern Ireland could rejoin the EU after a future border poll, Gerry Adams said he welcomed the potential for a united Ireland, but Ian Paisley called the discussion 'hypothetical fantasy'. RTÉ News reported that a draft declaration of the EU would state that the 'entire territory' of a united Ireland would be part of the EU if a referendum in favour of unity was held. The BBC reported that the 27 EU leaders had unanimously agreed that they wanted to avoid a hard border as part of their Brexit negotiating guidelines.

29th Taoiseach Enda Kenny called the outcome of the extraordinary European summit a 'huge endorsement of the Government's approach to the Brexit negotiations and a clear recognition of the unique and specific challenges facing Ireland'.

30th Sinn Fein's Stormont leader, Michelle O'Neill, attended a commemoration for 8 IRA men killed at Loughgall by the SAS.

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May 2017

1st The DUP's Sir Jeffrey Donaldson accused Sinn Féin's Stormont leader Michelle O'Neill of 'reopening wounds' by her attendance at the Loughgall commemoration.

2nd A search began for the body of Seamus Ruddy, who had been killed by the INLA in France.

It was reported that the son of Pat Finucane, John, would stand as the Sinn Féin candidate in North Belfast in the upcoming general election.

3rd Christine Connor, a 'lone-wolf', pleaded guilty to the attempted murder of a police officer. She had also tried to recruit someone online to kill police officers.

The EU Commission's chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier said that Ireland would be a key issue in talks.

4th The search continued in France for the body of 'Disappeared' victim and former INLA member Seamus Ruddy.

Councils along the border said they would work together to make sure their interests were represented during Brexit.

5th The sister of Seamus Ruddy arrived at the site where his body was believed to be buried.

6th The remains of Seamus Ruddy were found in Foret Domaniale.

7th The sister of Seamus Ruddy gave thanks that he had been found.

A man was injured when shots were fired at a house in Lurgan.

8th The SDLP rejected Sinn Féin's suggestion that they stand aside from two seats in the June election.

10th Former Taoiseach Bertie Ahern warned that there was no easy solution to resolving the Irish border issue after Brexit. An imaginative policy would be needed regarding trade.

12th Former British Prime Minister Tony Blair said a British-Irish agreement on the border was the best way of limiting the damage from Brexit.

It was reported that twelve soldiers could be prosecuted for perjury in relation to Bloody Sunday.

In Dublin, Prince Charles honoured the Irishmen who fought for Britain and all the people who died in the 1916 Easter Rising.

Brendan Duddy, 'Northern Ireland's secret peacemaker', died aged 80. He had acted as a secret back-channel between the British government and the IRA leadership for more than 20 years.

13th British Prime Minister Theresa May visited Northern Ireland and called on its politicians to 'come together' to form an agreement over a return to power-sharing. She said there was 'goodwill on all sides'.

14th A woman was injured when a petrol bomb was thrown into her house in east Belfast.

15th The Kingsmills massacre inquest resumed in Belfast.

16th Non-viable pipe bombs were found during a search in Portadown.

An inquest heard that a gun used in the Kingsmills attack had also been used int he murders of two senior police officers in 1989.

17th Two men who had been questioned over the killing of police officer Ronan Kerr were released.

An inquest heard that a suspect in the Kingsmill massacre had been linked to 46 murders.

18th It was reported that paramilitary-style shootings had doubled over the previous year.

19th The UUP's Doug Beattie apologised over misleading election posters.

20th Prince Charles visited the place in the Republic where his great-uncle Lord Mountbatten had been killed by the IRA in 1979. He said that the murder had given him a profound understanding of how people affected by the conflict suffered.

22nd The right-wing British press hounded Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn on his alleged past support for the IRA. Corbyn's republican sympathies became a main line of attack during the general election campaign.

Sinn Féin's northern leader Michelle O'Neill predicted that the party was on course for a ground-breaking election.

The coroner at the Kingsmills massacre inquest appealed for more witnesses, saying that this could be their last chance to testify.

23rd After an Islamist suicide bombing in Manchester, England, the father of Warrington fatality Tim Parry offered his support to victims.

The relatives of those killed by the British army in Ballymurphy began civil proceedings against the Minister of Defence.

24th A teenager from Northern Ireland was charged in relation to online material he posted apparently condoning the Manchester Arena bombing. Meanwhile, it was announced that more police would be deployed in Northern Ireland as else in response to the Manchester attack. In the Republic, security agencies met to discuss the situation.

A child was injured when dangerous material was dumped on a bonfire in Belfast. It was later reported that bonfires would be inspected.

The idea of a United Ireland became a hot issue during the Fine Gael leadership campaign.

25th An inquest into the Kingsmills murder heard that RUC Special Branch had denied police detectives permission to question a number of prime suspects.

Prince Philip visited Northern Ireland.

26th The Alliance Party's Naomi Lang criticised political parties in Northern Ireland for their 'distasteful political point scoring' over the Manchester Arena attack. However, she said that she understood Sinn Féin's difficult position, in that it would be criticised whether or not it condemned the bombing.

The detective who led the investigation into the Kingsmills murders apologised to the victims' families for not getting the satisfaction they hoped for.

28th In the early hours of the morning, shots were fired at a house in Derry.

When pushed to explain her past remarks in favour of the IRA, Labour politician Diane Abbott said her views had changed like her hairstyle.

A man was fatally shot in a supermarket car park in Bangor. The man was later named as Colin Horner. His death was blamed on an ongoing UDA feud.

30th The SDLP's Colum Eastwood said that the referendum on an United Ireland was 'no longer solely the project of Irish nationalism'. His reasoning was that a 'unity referendum now has a much broader reach, offering us a return to the European Union as a sovereign country'.

31st Jim Wells of the DUP was criticised for saying SF was not welcome in Rathfriland, a 'unionist' town.

Arlene Foster of the DUP said that maintaining the union with the UK was by far the most important issue in the general election, and that a border poll should be put off for generations. She also called for all paramilitaries, including the UDA, to disband.

An inquest heard that a man was regularly travelled on the minibus at the centre of the Kingsmill Massacre was later named as one of those involved in the attack.

A coroner suggested that the IRA members who bombed Birmingham in 1974 should be named.

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June 2017

1st UUP leader Robin Swann warned that pushing for a special status for Northern Ireland after Brexit could lead to a 'united Ireland by the back door'.

The Irish News reported that Orangeman John Aughey had appeared in court charged with driving into a crowd of people at a contentious parade on the Crumlin road in north Belfast on 13th July 2015.

Two men from County Meath admitted offences linked to the discovery of a bomb at a hotel in Derry which was due to recruit a PSNI recruitment event in October 2015.

Gerald Byrne, the first man at the scene of the Kingsmills massacre, was accused of making up suggestions that Army Captain Robert Nairac stopped the minibus on the night of the attack.

2nd The Workers' Party criticised the major parties in Northern Ireland for trying to turn the general election into 'another sectarian headcount' based on Brexit and the Irish border.

Sinn Féin election candidate John Finucane reported tweets mocking his father's murder by loyalist paramilitaries to the police.

Concerns were raised over the future of cross-border healthcare after Brexit.

4th In Dublin, a man was charged with possessing TNT and another man was charged with IRA membership. The explosives had been destined for use in Northern Ireland.

5th The leaders of the Stormont parties argued on TV over the condemnation of terrorism and how to respond to Brexit. Robin Swann of the UUP welcomed Sinn Féin's condemnation of the recent Islamist attacks in England, but said he wished they would condemn IRA bombings. Sinn Féin's Michelle O'Neill said that parallels should not be drawn between international extremism and what had happened in Ireland. She criticised the DUP over recent endorsement they had received from a group linked to the UDA. Alliance leader Naomi Long said that it was tasteless to relate the recent attacks to their arguments over the conflict in Northern Ireland.

An RUC veteran suggested that British police should be armed after the London attack. He said that 'it's a totally different ball game to what I grew up with in Northern Ireland, where the terrorist essentially attacked someone. It was very short, it was sharp and then they looked to get away. In England, in the last three series of attacks, that's not been the case - they actually hang about and try to kill as many people as possible.'

6th The DUP refused to accept an endorsement by a group backed by the three main loyalist paramilitary organisations, the Loyalist Communities Council, which had called for unionist voters to turn out.

7th The shadow Brexit Secretary, Sir Keir Starmer, said that past comments by party colleageus about the IRA were 'regrettable'. He said 'we have to call out terrorism for what it is'.

8th A general election took place in the United Kingdom. The SDLP and UUP won no seats, while the DUP emerged with 10 seats and Sinn Féin with seven.

9th Following the UK general election, the ruling Conservative Party was no longer able to form a majority government. It suggested a 'confidence and supply' agreement with Northern Ireland's Democratic Unionist Party.

10th A man was injured in east Belfast when a petrol bomb was thrown into a house during the night.

The alliance between the Tories and the DUP caused shockwaves across Britain, where the DUP had not previously been well known. Ruth Davidson of the Scottish Conservatives asked for reassurances that LGBT rights would not be affected. The DUP's links to paramilitaries was also brought into question. Hundreds of people descended on parliament to protest the alliance with the DUP.

Michelle O'Neill of Sinn Fein said that the DUP had 'once again betrayed the interests of the people of the north by supporting a Tory party which has cut funding to our public services year on year to the tune of hundreds of millions of pounds. Experience shows us that unionists have minimal influence on any British government. They have achieved little propping up Tory governments in the past and put their own interests before those of the people.'

Meanwhile, the SDLP said they were up to the challenge of changing after their election defeat.

11th At midnight, a vulnerable 15-year-old was targeted in a paramilitary-style attack, leaving him with broken bones.

James Brokenshire was reappointed as Northern Ireland Secretary.

The Observer suggested that the DUP would 'extract a high price' for its cooperation. It also reported that the DUP would not negotiate on a Sunday because of its religious beliefs. In another article, it reported that the deal would force the Conservatives to change their priorities. Theresa May had called the election to strengthen her mandate for a Hard Brexit, but the pact with the DUP had weakened her position, with the DUP opposing a hard border in Northern Ireland. The price of the DUP deal was likely to be economic aid to Northern Ireland, and no vote on Irish unity.

Outgoing Taoiseach Enda Kenny expressed concern over the DUP deal. He wanted assurances that 'nothing should happen to put the Good Friday Agreement at risk'.

12th An inquest heard that a pregnant teenage girl shot during an exchange between paramilitaries and an army patrol in June 1972 had been totally innocent.

Former British Prime Minister John Major warned that the DUP-Tory pact could put the peace process in danger. However, Arlene Foster of the DUP called the deal a 'tremendous opportunity'.

13th The Guardian argued that Sinn Féin's abstentionist policy was strengthening the Conservatives. It also criticised the DUP-Tory alliance on the grounds that it would affect the peace process and British relations with the Republic of Ireland, and it would create an unfair benefit to one part of the UK.

People continued to satirise the Conservative-DUP deal. The Belfast Telegraph argued that the DUP had been the victim of a flood of fake news.

The government came under pressure from Labour and the SDLP to deliver a pledge to force Northern Irish political parties to declare their donors.

14th The Tory-DUP deal announcement was put on hold because of a tower block fire in London.

15th Nigel Dodds of the DUP said that there was no deadline for a deal between his party and the Conservatives despite a date being set for the Queen's Speech.

Sinn Féin accused Theresa May of not honouring the Good Friday Agreement in her pact with the DUP.

The Guardian reported that the DUP's leader Arlene Foster had written to the Scottish government in 2015 asking ministers to bar same-sex couples from Northern Ireland from converting their civil partnerships into full marriages.

Sinn Féin's Gerry Kelly said that threats against nearly 50 people by 'Communities Against Drugs' should be lifted.

Orangeman John Aughey was found guilty of injuring six people with his car during a nationalist protest.

16th The DUP leader Arlene Foster said it was 'right and proper' that her MPs would support the Conservative government's first Queen's Speech.

The Guardian recorded Northern Irish reactions to the Conservatives' deal with the DUP.

The former UUP chairman David Campbell resigned from the party, accusing it of 'political mismanagement and amateurism'.

The Equality Commission said it was to investigate the Department for Communities' handling of an Irish language bursary scheme. It said that the department might not have complied with its approved equality scheme in making funding decisions.

The PSNI revealed that about 16 officers had to move or have special security measures installed at their homes every year because of threats.

19th The boyfriend of Marian Brown described her shooting in 1972.

The new Taoiseach, Leo Varadkar, said he had been 'reassured' about a potential deal between the Conservative Party and the DUP.

A court heard that the murder of Colin Horner was related to tensions within the UDA.

The Guardian carried an article about the 'invisible victims' of the DUP's abortion policy.

20th Christine Connor, described as a 'lone wolf republican', was jailed for 16 years.

The DUP was fined £4,000 over assembly election spending returns.

The Guardian reported that 'an experienced legal team' was planning to challenge the proposed deal between the DUP and the Conservatives because it breached the Good Friday Agreement.

The inquest into the death of Marian Brown heard that soldiers 'thought they were being shot at'.

Sinn Féin warned that any deal between the DUP and the Conservatives would have big implications for the Northern Ireland talks.

21st The DUP expressed anger over being referred to as 'dinosaurs'by Green Party MP Caroline Lucas.

One of Strabane's biggest employers, sports firm O'Neills, expressed concerns over the potential impact of Brexit on its business.

It was reported that Christine Connor, who had been convicted over a 'solo republican terrorist campaign', had used a fake name and photos of a Swedish model online to solicit help from two men who both later took their own lives. She had persuaded one of them to purchase explosives, which she used on attacks on police.

The SDLP claimed that Sinn Féin and the DUP were preparing to make power-sharing deal.

22nd The inquest into Marian Brown's death heard that the army patrol that shot her had 'come under attack'.

Sinn Féin said that time was running out for the Stormont talks.

It was reported that Green party politician Ciaran McClean had begun a legal challenge against the anticipated deal between the DUP and the Conservatives.

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar said that the door remained open for the UK to stay in the EU.

23rd A soldier gave evidence in the inquest into the death of Marian Brown.

Irish language group Conradh na Gaeilge claimed that the DUP had described a £19m estimate to implement an Irish Language Act reasonable.

It was reported that former UVF commander turned informer Gary Haggarty had admitted to 200 paramilitary offences including five murders.

A Belfast City Council committed agreed that the storage of up to 3,000 bonfire pallets by the council.

Invest NI said they wanted to see a return to Stormont to help attract jobs and grow the economy.

The Respect Shared Space Rally protested the flying of flags in mixed areas.

24th The director general of the Confederation of British Industry said that an urgent solution was needed to Irish border issues after Brexit.

A parade in Bangor marked NI Armed Forces Day.

Gerry Adams called for a new approach from nationalists and republicans to 'unlock unionist opposition to a new Ireland.'

Guns and ammunition were seized at a house in west Belfast.

25th A man was targetted in a paramilitary-style shooting in north Belfast.

26th A deal was announced between the DUP and the Conservative party. The DUP secured £1 billion for extra spending in Northern Ireland. Sinn Féin and others cautiously welcomed the extra money. However, Scottish and Welsh politicians were critical.

The Irish foreign minister Simon Coveney warned that time was running out in the Stormont talks.

It was reported that a 76-year-old soldier, Dennis Hutchings, would stand trial over the death of John Patrick Cunningham, who had learning difficulties, in 1974.

Shots were fired at the funeral of republican Barry McMullan in Belfast.

27th The Stormont power-sharing talks entered what was meant to be their final phase. One contentious issue was the Irish Language Act. Sinn Féin wanted to put Irish on an equal par with English, while the DUP looked to incorporate Ulster Socts into the act.

The Defence Secretary Michael Fallon defended the deal with the DUP, denying the money was a 'bung'. He said the money would 'go to improving some investment, improving the infrastructure of the province, growing the private economy of the province, and ensuring its employment rate – which is behind Wales and Scotland – catches up'. Carl Emmerson of the Institute for Fiscal Studies argued that 'the size of the UK's public finances means you can give away £1bn a year and it's not much more than a rounding error'. Criticism of the government continued as the Conservatives had frequently taunted Labour about a 'magic money tree'. Gerry Adams wrote in the Guardian that the Tory/DUP deal must not be allowed to disrupt the Good Friday Agreement.

28th Former Tory chairman Chris Patten said that the DUP-Tory deal could damage the peace process 'in the long term'. He said that although Sinn Féin would want 'part of the action' initially, the DUP was a 'toxic brand' and British newspapers were already digging into their links to paramilitary organisations. Meanwhile, the SNP joked that each DUP MP was now 'worth more than Ronaldo'.

Sinn Féin called for the British and Irish to intervene to break the deadlock in the Stormont talks. The Guardian reported that the talks were 'on course for failure'.

The Guardian reported on the 'culture war' at the heart of the Stormont talks.

Two men who had been arrested over the shooting of a police officer at a petrol station in January were released unconditionally.

29th The building of a bonfire forced the closure of a car park in east Belfast.

After the deadline for Stormont talks was passed, it was extended to the next Monday.

The family of murdered police agent Denis Donaldson urged the Police Ombudsman for NI to take legal action which would force gardaí to give full access to his journal.

The inquest into the shooting of Marian Brown heard that the soldier who shot her 'fired all his bullets'.

30th Northern Ireland Secretary James Brokenshire said that the absence of devolved government 'cannot continue for much longer'.

The Guardian reported that the DUP and Sinn Féin were close to a power-sharing deal, as the talks were down to technical details such as aspects of the Irish Language Act.

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July 2017

1st Gerry Adams accused the DUP of lacking urgency in the NI talks. The DUP's Christopher Stalford called for an end to the 'culture war'.

2nd A suspicious object caused a security alert in Derry.

The DUP said that Sinn Féin couldn't 'demand a 10-0 win' in the talks to restore power-sharing.

3rd Northern Ireland Secretary of State James Brokenshire announced that future donations to political parties in Northern Ireland would be published. He also said that the felt a deal between the main parties 'remained achievable'. Irish Minister for Foreign Affairs Simon Coveney said that the next 24 hours would be crucial for restoring a power-sharing Executive.

In Derry, a woman narrowly escaped injury when she walked past a suspicious object being made safe in a controlled explosion. The object was later declared a hoax.

4th Talks failed to restore the power-sharing executive, with Sinn Féin's Michelle O'Neill blaming the deadlock on the DUP's support for the Tory government.

The Electoral Commission called for the publication of donations to political parties in Northern Ireland to be backdated to 1st January 2014.

5th SDLP MLA Nichola Mallon called for Stormont politicians' pay to be cut while the assembly was not sitting. She said that 'no one should be paid for a job they are not doing'. Meanwhile, the BBC reported that the Northern Ireland Secretary of State, James Brokenshire, would be making some financial decisions after the executive collapsed before agreeing a budget. The United States called for a re-establishment of power-sharing.

A bonfire at a public carpark off the Upper Newtownards Road in Belfast, which had been at the centre of a dispute between its creators and Belfast City Council, was set alight.

6th Kevin Nolan from west Belfast was jailed for storing Semtex, guns and bullets for republican paramilitaries.

British Brexit Secretary David Davis agreed to visit the Irish border region to hear the concerns of people living in the area.

The UK-based think tank 'Policy Exchange' suggested that Ireland want to leave the European Union after Brexit. Their report argued that the EU could not negotiate on behalf of Ireland as one of the remaining 27 EU member states, as Ireland was the most politically and economically exposed to Brexit.

7th King William's riding stirrups, which he had worn at the Battle of the Boyne, failed to sell at auction.

The DUP and Sinn Féin indicated that they might jointly approach the government to ask it to put in place a system to grant compensation to historical abuse victims.

Police ended their legal attempt to force five off licences to shut during the Twelfth of July parade in Belfast, after some of the retailers agreed to close for limited hours.

It was reported that a bonfire had been built next to a petrol station in Carrickfergus.

8th Thousands of Orangemen and women took part in the parade at Rossnowlagh.

Belfast City Council was granted an injunction to stop more materials being added to loyalist bonfires at four sites in the city.

9th Green party member Ciaran McClean announced a legal challenge to the UK government's deal with the DUP.

10th Self-confessed IRA bomb maker Michael Hayes issued an apology for the Birmingham pub bombings.

Unionist parties the DUP and PUP accused Sinn Féin of a 'cultural war' over the Twelfth. They called on unionist to attend a 'cultural convention' in the autumn to promote future 12th July events.

A lawyer argued that Sinn Féin's demand for an Irish Language Act in the Northern Ireland power-sharing negotiations might violate the Good Friday Agreement equality clause.

Derry man Anthony Moran, who had been shot in the knees by paramilitaries a week earlier, said he believed his friend had been the intended target.

11th Paddy Hill, who had been wrongly convicted over the Birmingham bombings, called the Michael Hayes' apology 'an insult'. A detective who had been at the scene of the Birmingham pub bombings, John Plimmer, said it was 'the duty of the British police' to interview Michael Hayes.

Bonfires were lit in many loyalist areas for the Eleventh night. Firefighters later said it was a 'busy night' for them. Near Sandy Row, they stopped a bonfire spreading to an apartment block.

12th A woman was hit by a car during a Twelfth of July parade on the Lisburn Road in south Belfast. However, in general the parades passed off peacefully with no arrests. The Grand Orange Lodge said that the Twelfth had been 'the biggest in a generation'.

It was reported that the Secretary of State James Brokenshire would take financial decisions for Stormont during the week.

Guy Verhofstadt, the European Parliament's Brexit negotiator, suggested that people from Northern Ireland could elect MEPs in the Republic of Ireland after Brexit.

A petrol bomb was thrown at a baptist church in Stewartsdown, Co. Tyrone.

13th The British Lords urged Theresa May to visit Northern Ireland to break the deadlock at Stormont.

A teenage boy was shot three times in the legs in a gun attack in west Belfast.

Father Gary Donegan, who had been involved in talks to help resolve a long-running parade dispute in Ardoyne, said Northern Ireland should build on the progress it had made after the 'most peaceful' Twelfth of July commemorations in years.

14th After residents of a Belfast apartment block asked if the Northern Ireland Office would compensate them for damage caused by an Eleventh Night bonfire, they were told that it didn't operate a bonfire compensation policy.

An application for council money to fund a fanzone for Celtic supporters to watch their side's Champions League qualifier against Linfield was withdrawn. Belfast City Countil had approved the application but it was criticised by some politicians. The SDLP had called it 'a gross misuse of ratepayers' money.

Garda security boss Michael O'Sullivan warned that the New IRA were the biggest threat since the PIRA.

15th Sinn Féin's Michele O'Neill said that the relatively peaceful marching season boded well to create the right atmosphere for political talks aimed at restoring power sharing in Northern Ireland.

16th Viable pipe bombs were found and made safe in west Belfast and Strabane.

17th Speaking at Brussels, the Irish for foreign affairs said that technical solutions alone would not solve the problem of the Irish border after Brexit. Brexit Secretary David Davis had mentioned trusted trader schemes, automatic plate recognition and pre-tagged containers as solutions. However, Coveney said he believed 'that is not going to work. Any barrier or border on the island of Ireland in my view risks undermining a very hard-won peace process'.

18th The police requested a copy of the BBC's interview with IRA bomb-maker Michael Hayes.

SDLP MLA Daniel McCrossan said he would review security at his constituency offices after one of his staff was threatened by a member of the public.

Gerry Adams of Sinn Féin said that he was appealing convictions he received in 1975 relating to two attempts to escape from internment.

19th Scotland and Wales formally called for funding in light of the UK's deal with the DUP.

The House of Lords EU Committee said that political stability in Northern Ireland should not be allowed to become 'collateral damage' of Brexit.

20th Journalists marked twenty years since the IRA's second ceasefire, which had paved the way to lasting peace.

The DUP MLA Edwin Poots addressed a gathering in the Irish language.

DUP MP Sammy Wilson criticised James Brokenshire for a lack of clarity about how money secured through the DUP/Conservative deal would be spent.

The EU's chief negotiator Michel Barnier said that more detailed discussions were needed on how Brexit would affect the Good Friday Agreement in Northern Ireland.

21st Material gathered for a bonfire in the New Lodge area of north Belfast was removed from the site.

A man was shot in both legs during a paramilitary-style attack in north Belfast.

22nd Gunmen fired shots at a mechanic business in Keady.

Michael Gove suggested that farmers in Northern Ireland would get subsidies after Brexit.

24th The Orange Order asked its members to stop using the term 'RIP' to express sympathy after a death as it was an 'un-Protestant superstition connected to Catholicism'.

25th Former deputy first minister Seamus Mallon accused Sinn Féin and the DUP of creating a total mess with their failure to reach an agreement over devolution.

26th A court heard that Ciarán Maxwellm a Royal Marine from County Antrim, had made 14 pipe bombs to be used by republican paramilitaries to attack police.

The funeral of peacemaker Billy McConville took place. He had been the son of Jean McConville, a civilian killed by the IRA in 1972.

James Corry stood trial in Germany over a PIRA attack on a British Army base twenty years earlier. Corry admitted taking part in the attack, but denied that the main aim had been to kill soldiers.

27th It was reported that police had seized £70,000 in raids on loyalist paramilitaries.

The trial of Marine Ciarán Maxwell heard that he had suffered PTSD after a sectarian assault in 2002.

The widow of Pat Finucane, who had been killed by loyalist paramilitaries in 1989, was granted permission to take her bid for a public inquiry into his death to the UK's highest court.

It was reported that gardaí would interview former IRA member Michael Hayes who had admitted involvement in the Birmingham pub bombings.

28th The taoiseach, Leo Varadkhar, said that Ireland would not 'design a border for the Brexiteers'. He said 'as far as this government is concerned there shouldn’t be an economic border. We don’t want one.'

A high court ruled that the PSNI was breaching the human rights of families of victims of the UVF Glenanne Gang in the 1970s.

A court heard that Ciaran Maxwell, accused of providing support for republican paramilitaries, had been trapped in an 'intolerable double life' and was 'frozen' with fear of the paramilitaries.

DUP, UUP and SDLP councillors walked out of a council meeting in Fermanagh after Stephen McCann of Sinn Féin refused to withdrawal earlier comments in which he refused to condemn the Enniskillen bombing of 1987.

31st Former Royal Marine Ciarán Maxwell was jailed for 18 years after admitting living a double life as a bombmaker and quartermaster for republican paramilitaries.

Sectarian graffiti was daubed on murals and doors in Derry. DUP councillor David Ramsey said 'there is a sinister element involved and people are sick of it'.

After the DUP accused Taoiseach Leo Varadkar of politicking for domestic purposes after he said Ireland would not help Britain design an exonomic border after Brexit, Fine Gael senator Neale Richmond called them 'politically impotent' and told them to 'stop whinging'.

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August 2017

2nd DUP leader Arlene Foster said that Taoiseach Leo Varadkar needed to accept that Brexit was going ahead.

3rd Two men appeared in court in Dublin charged with IRA membership.

It was reported that the DUP was challenging the legality of Belfast City Council's new policy, which involved tackling dangerous bonfires.

4th Taoiseach Leo Varadkar said that there needed to be 'unique solutions' to preserve the relationship between the UK and the EU. He called Brexit 'the challenge of this generation'.

6th A petrol bomb was thrown through a pensioner's window in Strabane. Police blamed the attack on republicans opposed to the peace process and said they were treating it as attempted murder.

7th Cars were set on fire during violence in Belfast. The trouble began after council contractors removed material from an anti-internment bonfire in the Markets area.

8th Extra police patrols were deployed in Belfast after attacks on officers, cars and property.

A man was shot in a paramilitary-style attack in the Bogside.

9th The SDLP said that Belfast City Council's new bonfire policy was intact, even though no contractor was in place to remove bonfire material.

10th It was reported that families of those killed in the Omagh bombing were to sue the NI chief constable.

UUP leader Robin Swann Robin Swan called on Sinn Féin to stop using the Irish language as a red line to prevent the restoration of the executive.

It was reported that a controversial bonfire in Derry would go ahead despite efforts to offer an alternative. It was said that youths wanted to burn flags on the bonfire.

An article in the Guardian called the Orange Order's rejection of the term 'RIP' pointless.

A man arrested over the 1990 bomb attack that killed three police officers and a nun was released.

A man was abducted and beaten in Strabane. SDLP MLA Daniel McCrossan said that 'Strabane has witnessed a spate of attacks on individuals and families in recent months. The message must be put out there, and it must be clear, that these attacks have no place in our society.' Police said that they were probing paramilitary links to the abduction.

11th Former police ombudsman Nuala O'Logan said that a prosecution over the Omagh bombing could have happened if there had been a better police investigation.

12th The Apprentice Boys parade took place peacefully in Derry.

An artist set up an exhibition on 'softening the border'.

14th Two men were violently assaulted in Portadown.

A man was arrested over the 1990 attack that killed three police officers and a nun.

Disorder flared in the Bogside area of Derry after builders of an annual bonfire attacked police and members of the public.

15th Sean Kelleher, who oversaw customs enforcement on the Irish border for eight years, warned that Irish Revenue and Customs was not adequately resourced to deal with hard Brexit.

Community worker Paul Smyth said that paramilitaries were 'exploiting a political vacuum'. There had been 30% more paramilitary attacks between January and June in 2017 than in the same period in 2016.

16th The UK Brexit plan for the Irish border was called 'a recipe for chaos'. It involved seeking waivers for goods and people crossing the Northern Ireland border. Writing in the Guardian, Fintan O'Toole said the plan 'tells Irish people of all political persuasions exactly what they want to hear: that there will be no physical border of any kind across the island and that free movement will go on as if nothing had happened. But behind all of these delightful reassurances, there is sweet FA.' Northern Ireland Secretary James Brokenshire argued that the government's plans were realistic. There would be no return to a hard border.

19th A gun from the Battle of the Boyne was displayed at the Museum of Orange Heritage.

Shots were fired at a house in Derry while a toddler slept inside.

20th Former NI Secretary of State Peter Hain called on the government to soften its approach to taking the UK out of the jurisdiction of the European Court of Justice.

21st A brick, and then a petrol bomb and a pipe bomb were thrown at a house in Derry's Waterside area. Police investigated whether a sectarian motive was behind the attack.

Sinn Féin proposed a resumption date for Stormont talks.

24th IRA informer Sean O'Callaghan died in a drowning accident.

A suspect device was found under a prison officer's car in Ballygowan, County Down.

25th It was reported that Taoiseach Charles Haughey had not wanted the bodies of three IRA members killed by the SAS on the Rock of Gibraltar to come to Dublin.

26th Police released two men they had arrested in connection to a loyalist shooting in Bonds Street in December 2016.

27th A suspect device was removed for examination in north Belfast.

28th Several petrol bombs were thrown at a house in Larne in the early hours of the morning.

29th Alliance councillor David Armitage condemned 'locals only landlords' graffiti daubed on walls in east Belfast as racist.

30th Sinn Féin president Gerry Adams said that there would be no assembly without an Irish Language Act.

A search for remains at a location in West Belfast found nothing.

People had to be evacuated from their houses in Lettershandoney during a night-time security alert. Republicans opposed to the peace process had claimed that there was a bomb in the village. The alert continued for two days until a device was found.

A court ordered police and military authorities to release files relating to the Miami Showband murders.

31st Arlene Foster said she did not think that Unionists would only accept legislation for the Irish language if it also included protections for British culture and Ulster Scots identity. Sinn Féin moved to oppose her 'common-sense solution'.

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September 2017

1st It was reported that discussions on Ireland had been the most productive part of Brexit talks.

2nd Shots were fired at a house in Lurgan.

4th St Paul's Primary school in Lisnarick was evacuated following a security alert.

Political talks resumed at Stormont. NI Secretary of State James Brokenshire said that if the Stormont Executive could not be re-established, the government would be forced to legislate for an NI budget.

An inquest opened into the death of Belfast man Steven Colwell, who had been shot dead by police at a checkpoint in 2006.

The EU's chief negotiator, Michel Barnier, emphasised that 'a lot more substantial work' needed to go into preserving Irish cross-border co-operation after Brexit.

Austin Stack, the son of a murdered prison officer condemned remarks made by Gerry Adams about an IRA murder in 1991. Adams had said that jailing the killers of Tom Oliver would be 'totally and absolutely counter-productive'.

5th Sinn Féin leader Gerry Adams denied that there was a culture of bullying in the party after councillor, Lisa Marie Sheehy, resigned. On the same day, Adams called for a referendum on Irisih unity within the next five years.

Irish Minister for Foreign Affairs Simon Coveney called for political leadership in Sinn Féin and the DUP to restore power-sharing at Stormont.

6th Irish Foreign Minister Simon Coveney said there could be no UK-only direct rule. The British government countered that it would never allow joint authority for Northern Ireland.

7th Michael Barnier said that he was worried by the UK's post-Brexit proposals for the Northern Ireland border. He said the UK wanted EU laws to be suspended at a 'new external border'.

8th The DUP's Nigel Dodds said that his party would not let Labour 'gum up the works of parliament'.

9th Gerry Adams said that he hoped power-sharing could be restored, but he was not naive abou the challenges.

13th Jonathan McCormac was charged with shooting at a family's home in Larne during a loyalist feud.

Vandals desecrated a Church of Ireland church in Derry.

15th It was reported that the Probation Board for Northern Ireland had been warned of increased threat from republicans.

The Taoiseach Leo Varadkar said that he was not optimistic that enough progress had been made in Brexit talks to prepare the ground for a new UK/EU trade relationship.

16th A protest against the prosecution of former soldiers for killings during the Troubles was met by counter-demonstrations in London.

17th The victims' commissioner Judith Thompson said that if a Stormont executive was not restored soon, Westminster would have to deal with legislation around legacy issues.

19th A third man was charged over a gun attack on a house in Larne.

20th The European Parliament's Brexit negotiator, Guy Verhofstadt, said it was up to the UK to work out how to avoid new controls on the Irish border.

21st Two republicans from County Meath who had planted a bomb at the Waterfoot Hotel in Derry two years earlier were sentenced.

The Guardian reported that new data had highlighted the scale of difficulties facing Brexit negotiators disentangling the border between Britain and Ireland. The data showed that there had been 110m border crossings between the two in 2016.

22nd British Prime Minister Theresa May restated the policy of no Irish border posts after Brexit.

The Prosecution Service said it was considering an appeal on the grounds that the sentences on two men who planted a bomb at the Waterfoot Hotel in 2015 were too lenient.

23rd Donald Milliken, former head of Northern Ireland's Police Federation, said that RUC officers would have found a promotional film from 1976 'laughable'. The documentary purported to show everyday life in the force, but made no mention of the conflict.

A pig's head and racist graffiti was sprayed on walls of Inverary Community Centre in east Belfast. Police recorded it as a hate crime.

24th Ulster Unionist MEP called on the Secretary of State to speak for Northern Ireland on future Brexit discussions.

Gerry Adams insisted that Sinn Féin wanted a power-sharing deal with the DUP.

25th The DUP welcomed comments by Gerry Adams indicating that republicans were committed to the restoration of devolution.

A viable alert was found during a security alert in west Belfast.

26th It was reported that Donald Trump would not abolish the position of special envoy to Northern Ireland.

27th Arlene Foster condemned the fact that members of her party, the DUP, were heckled at a public meeting in Derry by a crowd of one hundred.

Northern Ireland and the Irish border were on the agenda for Brexit talks.

28th A man was arrested over threatening communications sent to a primary school which resulted in its being closed.

Irish Minister for Foreign Affairs Simon Coveney said that the Stormont executive could be up and running in a matter of weeks.

A petrol bomb was thrown through the window of a house of Ballymena, shortly before midnight.

29th It was reported that four Catholic families had fled their homes in Cantrell Close, Belfast, after being threatened by the UVF.

The PSNI forwarded a file to the Public Prosecution Service on a former Official IRA member as regards Bloody Sunday 1972.

Orangeman John Aughey was jailed for driving his car into a crowd of protesters during a parade in north Belfast.

A court heard that a feud between loyalist paramilitary factions which led to two deaths had cost police more than £5.

The mother of 12-year-old James Barker visited Omagh, where her son had been killed in the 1998 bombing. Donna-Maria Barker said that she hated the bombers and what they had done to her life.

30th Sinn Féin said that the police chief constable, George Hamilton, should explain why he attended a DUP fundraiser.

Shots were fired outside a takeaway in Balleymoney.

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October 2017

2nd Four men and a woman were charged with twenty offences following unlawful republican parades.

Party leaders issued a joint statement condemning threats to residents in Belfast. Four Catholic families had left their homes after receiving sectarian threats.

3rd Racist graffiti, 'EU rats out' and a swastika, was painted on a wall in Banbridge.

5th In the early hours of the morning, a man escaped injury when the house he was at in Craigavon was fired upon.

The PSNI claimed that the UVF was behind the intimidation of Catholics on Cantrell Close on east Belfast.

7th The PSNI chief constable George Hamilton said that the Red Hand Commando should 'simply go away'.

10th A man was charged over a bomb hoax at a school in Ballymena.

11th Irish Minister for Foreign Affairs Simon Coveney said that Stormont talks were at a sensitive point. He said that the DUP and Sinn Féin wanted to make the process work but they faced real challenges.

12th Christine Connor, a 'lone-wolf' republican jailed for trying to kill police officers, began an appeal.

13th It was reported that a human rights group was challenging the Conservatives' deal with the DUP on equality grounds.

Sean McVeigh pleaded not guilty to trying to kill an off-duty police officer with an under-car bomb.

A woman who had waved a banner at Belfast's Pride parade reading 'Fuck the DUP' heard that she could face a hate crime prosecution.

Pipe bombs were found during a security alert in Dungiven.

15th The DUP denied that there was a deal to restore power-sharing at Stormont.

The chair of the Community Relations Council, Peter Osborne, described the intimidation of Catholic families as a failure in politics.

17th Former US President Bill Clinton met political leaders. He warned that some people who had backed the split with the EU were not fully aware of what they supported.

Four arrests were made in an operation to combat the west Belfast UDA.

18th European Commissioner Paul Hogan said it was 'painfully clear' that the UK government wasn't going to provide a workable Brexit solution for Ireland. He criticised the 'tough guy approach' of UK 'Brexiteers'.

A man was charged with membership of the UDA.

19th Gerry Adams of Sinn Féin accused the Irish government of being involved in inaccurate and malicious briefings aboutt he political negotiations in Stormont.

20th It was reported that there were plans to speed up Troubles-related legacy cases in the High Court.

Sinn Féin mayor of Derry Maolíosa McHugh refused to welcome Prince Charles to the city because of 'unresolved sensitivities' around Bloody Sunday.

21st UUP leader Robin Swann said that the Irish Language Act would be divisive.

22nd Three vehicles were set alight in the early morning, during what police called a hate crime.

23rd Vincent Banks, who had bought the car used in the killing of NI prison officer David Black, was jailed for five years for IRA membership.

24th Death of former UDA leader Glen Barr, who had gone on to work in community and reconciliation projects.

A man in Newry was shot when answering the front door.

25th James Corry was jailed over the IRA bombing of a British army base in Osnabrueck.

The Taoiseach, Leo Varadkar, responded to Gerry Adams' comment that the Irish government had been engaged in 'untruthful, malicious and shameful' press briefings. Varadkar said that Adams had given up on a deal to save Stormont.

26th A crowdfunded legal challenge to the Tory-DUP £1 billion deal reached the high court, but failed.

A man was kidnapped and interrogated in Creggan by two men who threatened to shoot him. The alleged victim said he did not wish to pursue a complaint, but two men were arrested and charged.

27th A family forced to move home in east Belfast because of a racist attack said they had received little help from the authorities.

A High Court judge quashed a decision by the PSNI not to take further steps to identify and prosecute those responsible for the torture of the Hooded Men.

The former Director of the WTO, Pascal Lamy, said that Northern Ireland could become an 'autonomous customs territory' and choose to mirror EU trade and customs policy, avoiding the need for checks at the Irish border.

Intense talks between Sinn Féin and the DUP were adjourned.

A man was shot in an alley in Newtownabbey.

28th A man was beaten with batons in a 'paramilitary style attack' in Ballymoney.

29th Unionist MLA Steve Aiken said he believed the North was heading towards direct rule.

30th The deadline was extended for power-sharing talks between for Sinn Féin and the DUP.

31st Shots were fired at a house in Derry.

One of the founders of the Real IRA, Seamus McGrane, was found guilty of planning a bomb attack during Prince Charles's visit to Ireland in 2015.

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November 2017

1st The police found an explosive device at Poleglass that they said had been left by republicans.

Dr Christian Bock, head of the Swiss customs service, said he believed an 'invisible border' was possible in Ireland after Brexit.

Sinn Féin said that they were disappointed that talks to restore power-sharing at Stormont had failed. The DUP however blamed Sinn Féin for the failure.

2nd The shadow Northern Ireland secretary criticised Theresa May for not getting involved in talks to restore power-sharing.

3rd The DUP's Nigel Dodd said that he wanted direct-rule ministers running NI 'within weeks' if an agreement could not be reached on power-sharing.

SDLP MLA Justin McNulty said that Sinn Féin had to do more to encourage nationalists to join the police.

4th The former GAA club of Peadar Heffron, who had been severely injured in an attack by republican paramilitaries, said it condemned the attack 'unequivocally and without any ambiguity'. Heffron had spoken of the hurt he felt towards Kickhams Creggan GAA, which did not support him when he joined the PSNI.

6th A pipe bomb was found by workmen clearing north Belfast.

7th A judge said that he would compel the PSNI's Chief Constable to complete an investigation into the activities of the Glenanne Gang.

8th A memorial to the victims of the Enniskillen bombing was unveiled, but removed and put into storage hours later.

Police said that 'a number of items' had been found in east Belfast during a security alert.

9th Stephen Gaul, who father was killed in the Enniskillen bomb said that uncertainty over where a permanent memorial would be sited had been very hurtful.

Another councillor left Sinn Féin amid claims of a bullying culture.

10th British Prime Minister Theresa May urged the DUP and Sinn Féin to 'bridge the gaps' in outstanding issues in their talks.

British Brexit Secretary David Davis said that there had been 'frank discussions' about the Irish border in the latest Brexit talks. 'Let me be clear, we cannot have anything resulting in a new border being set up with in the UK. We remain firmly committed to avoiding any physical infrastructure. We respect the EU desires, but they cannot come at the constitutional integrity of the United Kingdom.'

The former Taoiseach Bernie Ahern commented that a hard Irish border would be a 'huge setback'.

Two men were arrested in Co Tipperary for conspiracy to import guns, bombs and ammunition into the country.

11th Sinn Féin's Gerry Adams and Michelle O'Neill spoke with British Prime Minister Theresa May about the current situation in the North.

12th A bomb alert disrupted a Remembrance Sunday ceremony near Omagh. The ceremony was postponed until the next weekend.

Monsignor Joseph McGuiness read out a statement at masses saying that there was no objection to a memorial to victims of the Enniskillen bomb.

13th Pipe bombs were found at Montgomery Close in Derry.

A deadline was set in the Anthony McIntyre Boston tapes case. Police and prosecutors were given two weeks to provide reasons why recorded interviews with McInyre should not be sent back to America.

Ivor Bell's legal team made an appeal to Belfast Crown Court to halt the trail into the killing of Jean McConville.

14th Former Northern Ireland Secretary Peter Hain wrote in the Guardian that it was painful to watch how 'local obduracy and Westminister's incompetence' had brought power-sharing to a halt for nearly a year.

15th Arlene Foster of the DUP said that a Corbyn government would be a disaster for Northern Ireland because of his republican sympathies.

Sinn Féin pressed Taoiseach Leo Varadkar for action on Stormont.

16th Former British chancellor Kenneth Clarke said that the UK remaining in the single market and customs union was vital for peace and stability in Northern Ireland.

17th The Taoiseach Leo Varadkar issued a warning that the progress of Brexit negotiations was at great risk of further delay. After a meeting with British Prime Minister Theresa May at the European social summit, he said 'I can't say in any honesty that it's close – on the Irish issue or on the financial settlement.' He argued that the UK had to give a written guarantee of no hard border between the Republic and the North before negotiations could move on.

Republicans opposed to the peace process were held responsible for death threats against a Protestant man who worked in the Ballymagowan area.

18th Gerry Adams announced his retirement from leadership of Sinn Féin.

British newspaper the Sun told Taoiseach Leo Varadkar to 'shut his gob' and 'grow up' over Brexit and accept it was going to happen. The newspaper opinionated: 'he is too busy disrespecting 17.4 million voters of a country whose billions stopped Ireland going bust as recently as 2010. [...] We are Ireland’s biggest trading partner and nearest neighbour. The effects of a "hard Brexit" could be catastrophic. Yet Varadkar's rookie diplomacy, puerile insults and threats to veto trade negotiations are bringing it ever closer. We can only assume his arrogance stems from a delusion that he can single-handedly stop Brexit.'

20th Michelle O'Neill ruled herself out as the new leader of Sinn Féin.

Campaigners expressed concern about a resurgence of punishment attacks, including assaults using iron bars, sledgehammers and electric drills.

21st Sinn Féin said that they were concerned by a proposed 'amnesty for British crown forces'.

Michelle O'Neill of Sinn Féin blamed the failure to restore power-sharing in Belfast on the Tory-DUP deal.

Downing Street said that it still believed that the Irish border problem could be resolved by December.

22nd Richard Haass, a US diplomat who had chaired political talks in the North in 2013, said that Northern Irish politicians who backed Brexit had made a 'historic mistake' that contributed to the crisis at Stormont.

Provincial secretary of the Ulster Council of the GAA, Brian McAvoy, said that players should be able to join the PSNI without impacting their membership.

A former soldier who had been present when the British army shot dead 25-year-old Joseph Parker in 1971 said that he didn't know anyone had been killed at the time.

24th Arlene Foster of the DUP said that she was concerned about a possible amnesty for police and soldiers for murders committed during the conflict.

Channel 4 apologise after posting a video on Facebook of a clip from US sitcom Black-ish that contained a joke about the Shankill bombing.

25th Two DUP MPs accused Taoiseach Leo Varadkar of ramping up tensions over Brexit. She said that the DUP would prevent 'internal barriers' after Brexit. She also warned Sinn Féin that time was short for a deal at Stormont.

SDLP leader Colum Eastwood condemned an attack on a car belonging to a party member in Derry as 'an extremely cowardly act'.

26th Liam Fox said that no final decision on the Northern Irish border could be made until a UK-EU trade deal had been reached. Shadow chancellor John McDonnell expressed concerns.

DUP leader Arlene Foster critised the 'megaphone diplomacy' of the Irish government in relation to Brexit.

27th Police in Derry took away a number of items for examination after searching a property in the city.

Writing in the Guardian, Polly Toynbee suggested that the border question could force British Prime Minister's hand over Brexit.

The Guardian also reported that a confidential study had shown that 142 cross-border activities would be negatively impacted by a hard Brexit. They included heart surgery in Dublin for children from the North.

It was reported that the supreme court would sit in Northern Ireland for the first time in 2018 to hear evidence on the case involving Christians refusing to bake gay marriage-themed cake.

28th Sinn Féin MP Chris Hazzard said that increased security at the border could lead to civil disobedience.

29th Brexit negotiators said they were increasingly optimistic that sufficient agreement could be reached over the border in the coming days.

DUP MP Ian Paisley accused the Irish government of acting 'disgracefully' over the border. He urged the UK to 'shake their cage'.

A man was shot in both legs in west Belfast.

30th Two men were charged with 'preparatory acts of terrorism' after their arrests in north Belfast.

The Guardian condemned xenophobic attacks in the British press against Ireland.

The DUP warned that any Brexit deal that gave the North a separate customs deal or trade regime from the rest of the UK would jeopardise the deal that kept Theresa May in power.

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December 2017

1st Gerry Kelly of Sinn Féin claimed that the DUP were bluffing over Brexit.

European Council President Donald Tusk met Taoiseach Leo Varadkar in Dublin and assured him of the EU's support for Ireland.

A report by the Police Ombudsman that said there was collusion between RUC officers and the UVF gunmen involved in Loughinisland was challenged in court.

2nd The Apprentice Boys' Lundy parade took place peacefully.

4th The British government attempted to strike a deal with the EU and appeared to have reached an arranged on the Irish border involving 'regulatory alignment' between the North and the Republic. However, at the last minute the DUP spoke up and rejected the deal. The Taoiseach, Leo Varadkar, said he was 'surprised and disappointed' and he needed 'firm guarantees that there will not be a hard border in Ireland'.

Belfast republican Damien 'Dee' Fennell was acquitted of charges arising from a speech at an Easter Rising event in Lurgan in 2015.

5th Arlene Foster of the DUP said that the deal the UK had been set to agree with the EU had been a 'big shock' to her party. She had first seen the text of the deal on the day it was announced, despite asking to see it for five weeks. Jim Shannon of the DUP said that the party 'had no misunderstanding' about the text of the agreement, and the Conservatives had been aware of their opinion.

Leo Varadkar told the Dáil that the 'the ball is now in London's court' after Brexit talks had broken down.

6th Four MPs, two Conservative and two Labour called for new legislation to prevent anyone accused of crimes linked to the recent conflict from being prosecuted. They argued that any statue of limitations that only covered security force members would 'fall foul' of international law. Johnny Mercer, a former Army captain, said he feared a cycle of litigation that would be simply 'lining the pockets of lawyers'.

DUP MP Nigel Dodds clashed with Independent MP Sylvia Hermon in the House of Commons over Brexit. Dodds accused her of 'being on the side of the Dublin government'. She denied being in contact with Dublin on the matter.

7th Tánaiste Simon Coveney told the Dáil that Dublin's core position on Brexit remained intact.

Republican leader Seamus McGrane, who had plotted an explosion during the visit of Prince Charles to Ireland in 2015, was sentenced to 11 1/2 years in prison at the Special Criminal Court.

8th After talks continued through the night, the British government struck a deal with the EU negotiators. There would be no hard border between the Republic and the North. Taoiseach Leo Varadkar greeted the news as satisfactory. He said that the commitments on the border were 'bulletproof'. RTÉ described it as being on balance a victory for Ireland. There was a line in the agreement which 'refers to an all-island economy which reflects the Government's more maximalist interpretation of the Good Friday Agreement'.

9th Gerry Adams said that Sinn Féin was not trying to exploit Brexit to gain a united Ireland.

10th The British Brexit secretary, David Davis, claimed that the Brexit divorce agreement between Britain and the EU was a 'statement of intent' only. The Irish government responded that 'we will as a government, a sovereign government in Ireland, be holding the United Kingdom to account, as will the European Union.'

Shots were fired in Garvagh. The two men arrested were believed to be involved in the UDA.

11th A report in Dublin by Consultancy EY suggested that a gap in the economic fortunes of Northern and Ireland would increase in the next years as Brexit loomed.

13th A court heard that loyalist Gary Haggarty who had been working as an informer, volunteered to kill Catholic Sean McParland in order to cover up his role. The intended target had been a relative of Sean.

Damien McLaughlin appeared in court accused of the murder of prison officer David Black.

14th A man was arrested after people were forced to evacuate their homes in a security alert in Derry.

A court heard that the RUC had failed to prevent two loyalist murders despite receiving advance warnings from an informant.

The SDLP voted against renaming a play park named after IRA hunger striker Raymond McCreesh. They wanted to 'avoid stoking community tensions'.

16th Gary Burke appeared in court in Derry charged with possessing explosives in suspicious circumstances.

20th A decision not to prosecute two retired police officers, who loyalist supergrass Gary Haggarty claimed had directed and protected him, faced a court challenge.

23rd A teenager was shot in both ankles in Dunmurray.

26th A man was shot in the leg in the Aileach Road area of Derry. The PSNI said 'we believe this was a paramilitary-style shooting'.

29th Newly published state papers showed that the UVF had claimed MI5 urged it kill the Taoiseach Charles Haughey.

The state papers also contained a claim that Sinn Féin President Gerry Adams had set up an IRA gang for ambush when they tried to blow up the RUC police station in Loughgall. Sinn Féin dismissed the claim as nonsense.

30th Four children witnessed the paramilitary-style shooting of a man in a house in west Belfast.

31st The State Papers revealed that there had been a discussion of a proposal for 'an all-island economy'. They also showed that contacts between Labour and Sinn Féin may have helped nurture moves by Gerry Adams to shift the group from violence. 'They reveal the Sinn Féin leader was banking on a general election victory in that year, or after, by a Labour party becoming re-energised under Neil Kinnock. The documents show Adams was intending to “sell” a plan to hardliners in the IRA that would see the new UK government declaring its intention to withdraw from Northern Ireland.'

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