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Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Former President Bill Clinton Returns to Northern Ireland to Discuss Economic Strategies and Peace

(September 29, 2010) -- Today former U.S. President Bill Clinton delivered a speech at the University of Ulster’s Magee Campus in Derry, discussing economic strategies for Northern Ireland while promoting US investment there.

Accompanied by US Envoy to Northern Ireland Declan Kelley, Clinton met with Northern Ireland leaders First Minister Peter Robinson and deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness, as well as former SDLP leader John Hume.

Addressing several hundred political leaders, business leaders and students at the University’s Great Hall, President Clinton encouraged the people of Northern Ireland to weather the economic difficulties of the time while remaining appreciative of the peace that has come to Northern Ireland.

"It was a really nice ride for a long time then, just like everybody's life, there are bumps in the road. This is also part of living a peaceful life, facing the tough times, facing the crisis and facing it together, " President Clinton said. "This is what the peace is about - about giving the people the chance to live responsible normal lives."

Mr. Clinton’s visit comes in advance of a US - Northern Ireland economic conference in Washington DC on October 19 that will be hosted by President Clinton’s wife, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

The economic summit, which takes place at the State Department, is part of a set of commitments made by President Barack Obama about Northern Ireland when he was campaigning for the president's office in 2008.

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