Many protestants will vote "no" in Friday's referendum. Kim Sengupta went to Unionist Sandy Row in south Belfast to ask why.

Click to follow
The Independent Online
Samuel McDonald, 47, painter:

"I did want to vote yes, because most of us want peace. However the more I looked into it the less satisfied I became. I'm not happy about the prisoners being released, and I am not happy that at the same time they are reducing the number of police officers. I don't think Sinn Fein will lay down their guns. So what do we achieve by voting yes? I frankly don't think this agreement is going to work. I'm sorry to say so, but there you are."

David Redfern, 72, pensioner

"I don't think this agreement does anything for us. I think, this can only lead to a United Ireland. Why should Dublin have any say in how I live.

It seems to me that all that happened is that politicians like David Trimble have sold us down the river. I also don't like all these politicians, Blair and Clinton, telling me what to do, I can think for myself. I am British and I don't need an American telling me what to think."

William Smith, 64, retired company director.

"Put quite simply this agreement is a sell-out. The other side have got almost everything they wanted, and we have been forced to give up far too much. A lot of people have suffered in the bombings and they must feel angry that these people of violence seem to have got what they wanted.

I've got very little faith in the politicians who have agreed to this. They must have known that this thing wasn't right."

Elizabeth Smith, 73, pensioner: "All of us want to see an end to all of the bombings and shootings. I thought that what they've agreed to can end the violence then I'd be the first one to sign. I don't think it's going to. I think the terrorists have simply won and I don't think that the prisoners should be released. No one around here wants to vote for this agreement. Of course we want our young people to grow up in peace, but this is not going to do it."

Alan Gurney, 64, pensioner:

"Four months ago a relation of mine got shot by republican terrorists - and this was when the ceasefire was supposed to be in existence. So there's no reason why I should vote for this peace agreement, because we can see that these people have not put away their guns. All my family feel the same way. None of them will be voting yes. I think one would have to be very silly to think that signing this thing will get rid of terrorism."

Comments