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Former US Diplomat Richard Haass began peace talks in Belfast, Northern Ireland, on Tuesday.
According to The Irish Times, the talks will center on those problems not dealt with by the peace process—mainly, on the flags and parades which have caused mass rioting between Catholic and Protestant communities.
While there has been improvement in relations between Catholics and Protestants in Northern Ireland since the signing of the Belfast Agreement in 1998, this past summer was one of the most difficult since the agreement with mass protests and riots over flags and emblems and parades leading to violence in the streets.
Haas will spend four months in Northern Ireland meeting with rival Protestant and Catholic parties, as well as churches, parading organizations, and militant pressure groups, The Associated Press reports.
He hopes to be able to come to a compromise concerning parades and British and Irish flags, symbols and emblems, remembering the tumultuous history of Northern Ireland, particularly, The Troubles, the country’s four-decade long conflict.