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Wednesday, June 3, 1998 Published at 19:53 GMT 20:53 UK


Prince meets victims of terrorism

Prince Charles was given a warm reception

The Prince of Wales met victims of terrorism when he was guest of honour at a garden party in Northern Ireland.

The Prince met terrorism victim Pat Campbell whose son Philip, 28, was shot by loyalists at a fish and chip shop near Hillsborough.

He also met Meryl Eakin, whose eight-year-old daughter Catherine was killed in the IRA bombing of Claudy in 1972. She helped the prince to plant a commemorative tree.

Sinn Fein leaders stay away

The garden party at Hillsborough Castle was hosted by Northern Ireland Secretary Mo Mowlam and was attended by some 2,500 people.

Guests at the event to which all Northern Ireland MPs were invited included Gary McMichael and David Adams of the Ulster Democratic Party, which speaks for the UFF loyalist paramilitaries.

Sinn Fein leaders Gerry Adams and Martin McGuinness refused invitations to the event

At the start of his hectic tour on Tuesday, Prince Charles backed Tony Blair's peace crusade by praising the search for "a new way of living together."

He completed a busy day of engagements meeting police, victims of violence and community workers before dining with Dr Mowlam at Hillsborough Castle.

He began his visit by opening a peace and reconciliation centre on the Antrim coast. Later, the Prince received a rapturous reception at a children's nursery.

Sixth royal tour

Security has been tight with police marksmen standing on the roofs of nearby buildings during the Prince's visits.

The tour is the sixth royal visit to Northern Ireland this year and coincided with a visit by Tony Blair to the province in his latest effort to cement the peace agreement.

The prime minister also had an event-packed day, visiting both Northern Ireland and the Irish Republic.





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