Trimble was the leader of the Ulster Unionist Party, who issued a short statement on Monday: “It is with great sadness that the family of Lord Trimble announced his peaceful passing earlier today after a short illness.”
Trimble, a former law lecturer at Queen’s University Belfast, made history as one of the key players behind the 1998 Good Friday/Belfast Peace Agreement.
Trimble and John Hume, the late leader of the Social Democrats and the Labor Party, were awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for their efforts “to find a peaceful solution to the conflict in Northern Ireland”.
Trimble later served as the region’s first minister until 2002. He led the Ulster Federal Party for a decade from 1995.
Trimble resigned as leader of the UUP after losing his seat in the 2005 British general election to the Democratic Unionist Party, which had opposed the Good Friday Agreement.
He accepted life-long nobles into the House of Lords and joined the British Conservative Party.
Among Monday’s tributes, Irish Taoiseach Micheál Martin recognized Trimble’s “central contribution” to peace.
“The work of reconciliation begun in the Good Friday Agreement continues, and as new generations take on the mantle of this work, it is fitting that we pay tribute to Lord Trimble for his central contribution to setting us on the path of peace and reconciliation,” he said.
Trimble is survived by his wife, Daphne, and their four children.
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