30/06/2017

Call For PM And Taoiseach To Be Involved In Stormont Talks

Sinn Féin is urging the Prime Minister Theresa May and the Taoiseach Leo Varadkar to become involved in the Stormont talks.

Discussions to restore power sharing in NI are continuing today, 30 June, after parties failed to meet the deadline.

MLA John O'Dowd said: "After weeks of negotiations there is no agreement by the DUP on the issues, of Acht na Gaeilge, the Bill of Rights, marriage equality, anti-sectarian measures, integrity and legacy, which collapsed the Assembly in January.

"This negotiation needs to be brought to an urgent conclusion.

"The DUP opposition to equality and a rights based society has been emboldened by their new alliance with the Tories.

"As co guarantor of the agreements it is time for the British prime minister Theresa May and the Taoiseach Leo Varadkar to take direct responsibility.
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"Sinn Féin is not prepared to accept anything less than full equality and the rights and entitlements that all citizens in this state should rightly expect."

SDLP Leader Colum Eastwood said: "The public has every right to be hugely frustrated and angry that another deadline has been missed.

"The SDLP has been clear that time wasn’t a factor here – securing agreement remains a matter of political will.

"Having spoken to the two governments the SDLP is however encouraged that some progress has been made – political leaders now need to be challenged to show some courage and get this across the line.

"There is too much at stake to allow our institutions to fall – the deadline may have passed but we still need to get the deal done.

"We cannot allow Northern politics to fall into a permanent status quo of huge frustration.

"At this point it is important that people have some insight into what has gone on, not only in the last number of days, but in the talking which has now been going on for months."

(CD)

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