Trevor Lunn MLA said: “We should be viewing this project as an opportunity, not a threat. We cannot run away from our history and hope that it is forgotten about.
“If we did nothing, then different groups will be free to put their own spin on what happened there. By having an officially approved project we can work together and ensure that our history can be correctly told.
“This centre will provide a focal point for those who wish visit Northern Ireland to study our peace process and also be a valuable information source for our students. The tourism potential is well illustrated in the interest in former prisons such as Kilmainham, Alcatraz and Robben Island.
“We should stop playing political games with the issue. There have been far too many delays to this development which is largely funded by European grants. Funds that will not remain available indefinitely.”