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2 September 2014
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Recent History - Northern Ireland: The

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Fact Files

Brief guides to the political parties and paramilitaries of Northern Ireland.
Political Parties
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Political Parties Paramilitaries
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Official IRA

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In 1969, the IRA split into the 'Official' IRA and the 'Provisional' IRA. Both organisations opposed partition and refused to recognise the governments of either the Republic of Ireland or Northern Ireland.

But whereas the Provisionals advocated violent confrontation, the Official IRA saw its role as purely defensive and pursued a policy of creating a socialist Ireland by largely policies means.

The Official IRA has feuded with other Republican groups, but has not embarked on any other major armed campaigns. It is believed to still exist and is thought to be responsible for more than 50 deaths during the Troubles.

At the same time as the Provisional IRA split from the Official IRA, its political wing, Provisional Sinn Fein, split from the Official Sinn Fein., which is now known as the Workers' Party of Ireland.

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