SF Hit Out At Stalled Talks Process

A Sinn Fein MLA has hit out at the pace of political talks to restore devolved government, claiming they have entered a "go-slow" mode.

Newry and Armagh MLA Conor Murphy was speaking as the 12 July celebrations, traditionally celebrated by unionists and loyalists, approach.

Secretary of State Karen Bradley told the House of Commons this week that she intends to return to Belfast as the talks process continues, however Sinn Fein's chief negotiator predicted a lack of progress in the next fortnight.

Speaking outside Stormont yesterday, 03 July, Mr Murphy said the region is long past the time when negotiations should be stalled to facilitate the marching season.
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The Sinn Féin chief negotiator said: "We have been working in this latest phase of talks for the last nine weeks to get a resolution to the outstanding issues and end the denial of rights which citizens can access everywhere else in these islands.

"Sinn Féin shares the frustration of the wider public and other parties that this negotiation has not been concluded as quickly as possible. It is our assessment that progress has been stalled and that nothing will happen for the next two weeks. It is long past the time that politics here is closed down to facilitate people marching on July 12th.

"The governments convened the current talks process and as co guarantors of the Good Friday Agreement they have a responsibility to ensure that we get credible, sustainable institutions up and running that treat all citizens equally.

"That has been our focus and will remain so in the time ahead."


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