The UUP began to be seen by the Protestant electorate as soft on Republicans and deeply divided. The DUP, in contrast, we to be seen as tougher as they were able to force Republcans to decommission.

The UUP resisted changes to policing and the security forces seeing them as their defence mechanisms against Republicans. Both Unionist parties resisted demilitarisation - closure of army bases, reduction in patrols. 

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Both Unionist parties resisted measures of Patten Report including the name change from the RUC/PSNI, 50/50 recruitment.

The UUP supported devolution of police/justice powers when there was a "a fully peaceful and democratic society"- it supported the principle in police recruitment, not 50/50 andUU opposed any amnesty for 'on the runs'.



UUP underestimated the ability of the DUP to change and become power-sharers wiht Republicans.

The UUP has floated the idea of voluntary coalition with SDLP forming a goverment of the 'centre'. It has also complained of contnued exclusion from power by DUP and SF.

The UUP called for major reforms to the Stormont system, to allow for the agreement of a programme of goverment  before ministers are appointed and an eventual move towards a system built around a goverment and an opppostion. This would end the mandatory coaliton.

The UUP would also like to reform the  goverment structures; significantly reduce the number

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