Unseen Documents Unveiled during Launch of Duddy Archive at NUI Galway
Documents highlighting the secrecy and tension involved in communication and negotiation between the British government and the IRA throughout ‘the Troubles’ were unveiled in NUI Galway at the launch of the Brendan Duddy Archive on Tuesday 22 November.
The archive holds documents from the three main periods during which Brendan Duddy secretly acted as an intermediary between the British government and the IRA. The first was in the early and mid 1970s when Duddy acted as intermediary during a series of contacts over the release of hostages and the ending of hunger strikes.
In 1980 and 1981 Duddy acted again as intermediary during the Republican hunger strikes. In July 1981 he began to record these contacts, conducted mainly by telephone, in a red hardbound notebook, the ‘Red book’.
Between 1990 and 1993 Duddy was again active at this intersection after a new
Secretary of State, Sir Peter Brooke, made the decision to try to incorporate
the Provisionals in a political settlement, an effort continued by his
successor Sir Patrick Mayhew. Northern Ireland
The archive contains over 700 descriptive items of paper and sound archives which will be available to scholars and bona fide researchers from January 2012. The archive includes coded diaries of contact as well as messages exchanged between the British Government and the Provisional Republican leadership.
For unseen documents and commentary by Dr Niall Ó Dochartaigh, NUI Galway: http://archives.library.nuigalway.ie/duddy