The Continuity Irish Republican Army, loyalist Volunteer Force, Irish National Liberation Army and Real Irish Republican Army were recognized as terrorist groups and their commitment to the ceasefire was not recognized as they were involved in ceasefire violations following the ceasefire announcement in 1997. [fn]”Paramilitary Groups Across the Divide,” BBC News, accessed February 1, 2013, news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/events/northern_ireland/paramilitaries/69824…. The Good Friday Agreement provided for the creation of the International Independent Commission for Decommissioning (IICD) to monitor, review and verify the complete disarmament of all paramilitary organizations. The deadline for the end of disarmament was May 2000. The Northern Ireland Arms Decommissioning Act (1997), which received royal approval on 27 February 1997, had a provision in section 7 for the creation of an independent decommissioning commission. The law was passed before the agreement was signed in 1998. That is why the Independent International Commission for Decommissioning was established as soon as the agreement was signed and was led by Canadian General John de Chastelain (1 Disarmament did not begin in 1998). Unionists and Republicans disagreed on the interpretation of the decommissioning wording, with Republicans saying they had no formal ties to the Irish Republican Army (IRA) and were therefore unable to influence the IRA. The issue of dismantling delayed the formation of the executive: David Trimble of the Ulster Unionist Party (UUP) refused to form the government after the July 1998 elections,2″The Good Friday Agreement – Decommissioning,” BBC News, May 2006, consulted on 31 January 2013. www.bbc.co.uk/northernireland/schools/agreement/policing/decommis… dismantling did not begin in 1998. With the Irish and British governments committed to reintegrating paramilitary prisoners into society by creating jobs, promoting retraining and training, the European Union created a support infrastructure in 1998 from the grant of the European Union`s Peace and Reconciliation Fund. It has been reported that the Northern Ireland Voluntary Trust, based in Belfast, manages the fund.

In addition, more than 26 community projects of ex-convicts have been implemented across Northern Ireland, with regard to education, placement, financial and social counselling, housing and family accommodation in Ireland.1″The Good Friday Agreement – Prisoners,” BBC News, www.bbc.co.uk/northernireland/schools/agreement/policing/prisoner… The release of the prisoners continued in 1999.