BELFAST, Northern Ireland, June 16 (UPI) -- U.S. President George Bush held Northern Ireland as a example for peace and business investment Monday during his visit to Belfast.
"(The) progress being made here in Northern Ireland (has) attracted the attention of societies around the world that wonder whether reconciliation is possible for them," Bush said during a news conference. "The truth of the matter is this is -- you know, people ... have come here and looked at the government, looked at the situation and gotten to know the people realize this is a good place to invest."
Bush praised a recent investment conference in Northern Ireland, noting "investment is going to help Northern Ireland realize its full potential."
"The endorsement of the president for our investment conference goes a long way and it lets people throughout the world know that Northern Ireland truly is open for business," said Peter Robinson, Ulster's first minister.
Martin McGuinness, deputy first minister, thanked Bush and other U.S. leaders who helped the peace process between Catholics and Protestants in Northern Ireland, "which I do believe is, as the president has identified, a real model for how other conflicts can be resolved in other parts of the world."
Northern Ireland officials don' have all the answers, McGuinness said, "but what we can say is that there is ... our experiences for others to consider."
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