Queen and ex-IRA leader meet

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For decades, McGuinness was an avowed enemy of the British empire — a representative of a paramilitary group that in 1979 killed the queen’s beloved cousin Louis Mountbatten with a bomb planted on his fishing boat.

But in a potent sign of just how far the peace process in Northern Ireland has come, the queen and McGuinness, now deputy first minister in Northern Ireland’s provincial government, exchanged pleasantries at a meeting in Belfast that would have been difficult for McGuinness’s Irish nationalist party, Sinn Fein, to stomach even a few years ago.

“You could see it as a last piece in a jigsaw peace process which has been very slowly and carefully put together over 20 years,” said Diarmaid Ferriter, a professor of modern history at University College Dublin....

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