Hume documentary to examine controversial Adams talks

A NEW documentary on the life of John Hume will examine the intense period in the early 1990s when the former SDLP leader was speaking to Gerry Adams while the IRA was still engaged in its terrorist campaign.

The programme will hear from those both inside and outside his party who were critical of his actions.

Hume is the latest in a series of BBC Northern Ireland documentaries for BBC One that describe the careers of key political figures in Northern Ireland.

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Other programmes in the series include profiles of Peter Robinson; Gerry Fitt, David Trimble, Martin McGuinness; Ian Paisley and Gerry Adams.

The one-hour biographical programme is intended to give local audiences a multi-dimensional view of the subject, making use of interviews with a range of contributors including former Taoisigh, senior Irish diplomats, John Major and Tony Blair, Bono, George Mitchell and President McAleese.

Since his retirement in 2004, John Hume has given few media interviews but with exclusive access to John and his wife Pat, Below the Radar’s hour-long documentary traces the life of this internationally-renowned political figure from the poverty of his early days to the signing of the historic Belfast/Good Friday Agreement.

John Hume was a near constant presence in Northern Ireland’s political life over several decades. He enjoys an international reputation for his role in securing the Good Friday Agreement and as a key architect of the Northern Ireland Peace Process - an achievement for which he was awarded the prestigious Nobel Peace Prize in 1998 alongside David Trimble.

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This film will also highlight his key role in leading the civil rights movement; his involvement in helping to establish credit unions in Northern Ireland; and his friendship with American politicians and Presidents.

Hume is on BBC One Northern Ireland, Monday, September 19 at 10.35pm.