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Governments must defend agreement – Gerry Adams TD

3 July, 2014 - by Gerry Adams TD


Sinn Féin President Gerry Adams TD has described this morning’s walk-out by the unionist parties from the all-party talks in Belfast as “a serious step back by the unionist leaders.”

Mr Adams said that in “the absence of all-party talks the onus now shifts very firmly to the two governments.

“As co-equal guarantors of the agreement the two governments must ensure continuing progress and this has to include implementing agreements already made that are their sole responsibility.”

Speaking at the Dáil the Sinn Féin leader said:

“There are more loyalist and orange parades taking place each year than ever before. In 2005 there were 2120 marches in the north. By last year that had more than doubled to 4,637. Two thirds of these are loyalist parades. Claims that objections by a handful of nationalist areas to orange parades going through their communities is an attack on the Orange is clearly a nonsense.

“The decision by the unionist leaderships today is evidence of their failure to stand firm against the demands of the Orange Order, the UVF and UDA in north Belfast. This is about these groups playing the Orange Card and using the threat of political instability to achieve their demands.

“This is unacceptable. The status quo is not tenable. Sinn Féin will resist all efforts by unionist leaders to roll back the Good Friday Agreement.

“The British and Irish governments must also stand resolute in defence of the Good Friday Agreement.

“In the absence of all-party talks the onus now shifts very firmly to the two governments.

“As co-equal guarantors of the agreement the two governments must ensure continuing progress and this has to include implementing agreements already made that are their sole responsibility.”

ENDS

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