Sinn Féin leaders speak to British PM
The Sinn Féin President Gerry Adams TD, Michelle O’Neill MLA and party Vice President Mary Lou McDonald, who are in New York, today held a 20-minute phone conversation with the British Prime Minister Theresa May on the current situation in the North.
Speaking after the phone call Gerry Adams said:
“In recent weeks Sinn Féin has worked closely with the DUP and the British and Irish governments to find solutions to the current impasse to restore power sharing and the political institutions. Sinn Féin was flexible and willing to stretch ourselves in an effort to achieve a breakthrough. However, despite our best endeavours the discussions were unsuccessful.
“I told the Prime Minister May today that the British government must bear the greater responsibility for this failure. The provision of an Irish Language Act, Marriage Equality, a Bill of Rights and funding for legacy inquests are all British government obligations.
“However, it appears that the Tory government’s priority at this time is to sustain its political pact with the DUP. Consequently, it has acquiesced to the blocking of the equality agenda by the DUP and of measures that are the norm in all other parts of our islands.
“We told the British PM that this is unacceptable. If power sharing and the Good Friday Agreement are to mean anything, then these rights based issues must be implemented.
“We also told her that direct rule was not an option and that she must look to the provisions of the Good Friday Agreement for the establishment of an intergovernmental conference involving the Irish and British governments.
“In the absence of the institutions the two governments must implement those outstanding rights issues.
“Sinn Féin remains committed to the restoration of the institutions and the Executive. However, they will only be credible if they are sustainable, durable and deliver for everyone.”