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Ferris - Sinn Féin push forward on all Ireland agricultural policy

4 April, 2003


A public meeting at the Canal Court Hotel in Newry on Thursday night (April 3) was informed of a forthcoming delegation of Sinn Féin elected representatives which is to visit Brussels in early May to meet with officials of the EU Agricultural Commission. The delegation will be led by the party spokespersons on Agriculture and Rural Development, Martin Ferris TD and Gerry McHugh MLA. The purpose of the visit is to make representations on a wide range of issues effecting farmers on both sides of the border.

Among the issues which will be raised are;

1. Agricultural status for the Six Counties

2. All Ireland milk quota

3. Rural Development

4. Fisheries

5. Animal health and disease prevention

6. UK tagging and an All Ireland food policy

All of the speakers who included Pat Doherty MP, Conor Murphy MLA, Councillor Pat O'Rawe, Gerry McHugh MLA and Martin Ferris TD stressed the importance of tackling these issues on an all Ireland basis and referred to the Sinn Féin project to advance this. Martin Ferris also referred to the need to convince farmers and rural communities from the Unionist tradition that their interests are best served in advancing towards an all island approach.

Deputy Ferris said: "More and more people from the Unionist tradition are coming to that realisation and I have no doubt but that many also have a far higher estimation fro Gerry McHugh than they do for any of the Unionist spokespersons on Agriculture and Rural Development". ENDS

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