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I arrive in Belfast on a chilly morning. I had spent many sleepless nights reading and preparing for the trip to Northern Ireland.

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Everyone I'd talked to about what to expect had spoken about the peace lines - physical walls keeping two communities apart. Growing up in South Africa, segregation was stark, but even I'd never seen anything like it.

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On Divis Street, one wall painted with murals, affican political, included the face of my first black doncaster street prostitution areas, Nelson Mandela. These seemingly demarcated areas reminded me of apartheid South Africa in a time of police curfews where there were spaces only whites were allowed and black people didn't dare wander.

This meant minimum to no interaction between races at most times, something the apartheid system thrived under.


In South Africa, there is a common narrative - apartheid was wrong and black people were the victims. Alan Bracknell, whose father was killed in a gun and bomb attack more than 40 years esocrts, told me a common narrative does not exist in Northern Ireland. It was an opportunity for victim africa perpetrator to come face-to-face, speak openly about what had happened and perhaps even find forgiveness.

There was once talk of a similar exercise for Northern Ireland after the ing of the peace agreement.

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Even today, some question whether more should have been done, whether instead of confessions, families should have demanded justice. In fact, some now are trying to lay criminal charges against known operatives of the apartheid government. It made it possible to hold a mirror to ourselves, it brought to the surface how deeply broken our society was, how scarred we were - and still are - by the violence.

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Prof Brandon Hamber, an expert on post-conflict transition, was involved in reconciliation efforts in both South Africa and Northern Ireland. So how are we going to live with each other? I visited two schools in Londonderry - one with many Protestant pupils, the other a Catholic school - separated by a river and a peace bridge. And there, listening to young people, my heart ached.

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They had not lived through woman seeking nsa carmine Troubles but had inherited the idea of "us" and "them". There have been a few incidents of unrest in recent months in places such as Derry. One of the biggest things the leaders in South Africa advocated during the transition into democracy was embracing a national identity, that you cannot build a people without a common identity, we would need to be South African first.

At the Catholic school, the group of pupils I spoke to identified instinctively as Irish, while at the other school the pupils told me they were British.

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Of course, any kind of South Africa-style TRC would require political consensus, something that may not be easy to get. The Troubles: How violence led to Army's longest campaign. What set Northern Ireland's Troubles alight? How race relations in the 'rainbow nation' have become toxic.


It struck me as odd that here, in first-world Europe, these divisions still existed. Up ahead stood a large metal gate, which someone opened each morning and shut at night. This unsettled me: I come from a broken society, and something felt broken here. He was seven years old when his father was killed in a bar during a family celebration. Truth and Reconciliation. The people I met believe there is simply no political will to see this pentecostal chat rooms.

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Our TRC process was not without its flaws. But one thing that many agree on is the process itself.

But how do you make reconciliation work? You may also be interested in:. Have efforts at integration been enough? Some communities in Northern Ireland remain polarised. This is evident even in the schools, most of which are segregated. The bridge was meant to sex chat motueka a gesture of connecting the two communities, but has it worked?

Pupils on both sides tell secorts they hardly ever go to "the other side". In Northern Ireland, there is no consensus on national identity. But how do you overcome those tensions?

Maybe speaking about them openly is the first place, something South Africans have learnt to do. The violence has diminished, but neither society has the luxury of forgetting about the past.

The troubles: does south africa hold lessons for northern ireland?

I'm reminded that peace is a fragile thing. Related Topics. More on this story. Published 13 August Published 12 August africwn Published 8 June

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