Northern Ireland news

Revamp of Enniskillen peace centre named after former US President Bill Clinton

Former US President Bill Clinton following his meeting with DUP leader Arlene Foster. Picture by Mal McCann

A PEACE centre in Enniskillen named after former US President Bill Clinton is to be revamped as part of a project involving universities on both sides of the Atlantic.

The Clinton Centre will be remodelled under a joint project between Dublin City University, Ulster University and University of Massachusetts (UMass).

The plan was revealed following a meeting between President Clinton and DUP leader Arlene Foster at the Culloden Hotel in Holywood, Co Down yesterday.

The building - built on the site of the IRA's 1987 Remembrance Day bombing - will incorporate a new memorial to the 12 victims of the attack.

An exhibition by artist Colin Davidson, 'Silent Testimony', which tells the story of 18 people affected by the Troubles, will also be held at the centre for six months to mark the 20th anniversary of the Good Friday Agreement next year.

Mr Clinton said he was delighted by the project.

"I think it is altogether fitting that there is going to be a monument to what happened at Enniskillen," he said.

"I think it is also important that this small community where a very big bad thing happened will able to launch good things for the future and I am thrilled."

Mrs Foster thanked President Clinton for his continued interest in the peace process.

"It is a sad reality that Enniskillen is known to many across the world as a result of the 1987 bomb in the town," she said.

"I have worked with many of the survivors of that bomb. A permanent memorial for the victims being incorporated into the remodelled Clinton Centre will be a fitting tribute to those who lost their lives and those who still live with the scars."

President Clinton later met Sinn Féin president Gerry Adams and the party's northern leader Michelle O'Neill.

Ms O'Neill said they discussed the Clinton Centre project.

"We welcomed the plans to revamp the Clinton Centre in Enniskillen and the President's ongoing interest in developments in the peace and political processes," she said.

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