Sinn Féin - On Your Side

Sinn Féin poised for EU breakthrough

6 March, 2004

A meeting of the Sinn Féin Officer Board took place this morning in Monaghan. The meeting discussed the current state of the Peace Process and was briefed by Party President Gerry Adams on last week's discussions with British Prime Minister Tony Blair and Martin McGuinness's meeting with the Taoiseach. The meeting also discussed preparations for both the EU and 26 County Local Government elections.

Speaking after the meeting Mr Adams said:

"Today's meeting of the Officer Board was the first meeting since our Ard Fheis. I briefed the meeting on the current state of play in the peace process and on our discussions with Tony Blair in London this week and Martin McGuinness's meeting with Taoiseach Bertie Ahern.

"And at this time I would again challenge Bertie Ahern to face up to the responsibilities that the Irish Government have as co-guarantor with the British Government of the Good Friday Agreement.

"In all of the public remarks from the two governments there has been a focus on what others should do and no indication that the two governments will fulfil their responsibilities despite clear public admissions by both Tony Blair and Bertie Ahern that they have yet to complete the implementation of many aspects of the Good Friday Agreement.

"Much of the meeting however focused on our preparations for the 26 County Local Government elections and the EU elections scheduled for June. Party Vice President Pat Doherty has been appointed as our National EU Director of Elections and we face into the elections in a confident mood.

"Sinn Féin's agenda for change is garnering supporting across the island. I believe that this growing support will result in a major breakthrough in June when an all Ireland Sinn Féin team will be returned to the EU parliament. I believe that both Bairbre de Brún and Mary Lou McDonald are well placed to pick up seats and that we will make major advances across the 26 counties in the Local Government elections.

"I think that the establishment parties know this also and this provides much of the rational for the recent unwarranted attacks being made upon this party.

"Sinn Féin does not take the electorate for granted. We will continue to work hard in the coming months to ensure that the potential which clearly exists, with an ever growing number of republicans on the island, is delivered." ENDS

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