Sinn Féin - On Your Side

DUP Need To face New Political Realities

3 August, 2005


Sinn Féin Assembly member Alex Maskey today urged the DUP to stop grand
standing  and face up to the new political challenges created by the
historic IRA statement of last week. Mr Maskey's remarks came after a
meeting in London between the DUP and the British Secretary of State Peter
Hain.

Mr Maskey said:

" Nationalists and republicans have been listening to Ian Paisley's rants
for decades. The reality is that nationalists and republicans are more
confident and more determined to see progress made that at any time since
partition. The days of second class citizenship and discrimination are over
and are not coming back.

" The DUP have been playing catch up with the political process here since
the first IRA cessation in 1994. Last weeks historic initiative by the IRA
creates a new political dynamic on the island and presents new political
challenges and realities for all of us. Retreating to the certainties of
conflict and sectarianism is not an option if this new opportunity is to be
fully grasped.

" There remains no excuse for the two governments in implementing the
outstanding aspects of the Good Friday Agreement. These are not concessions
or bargaining chips. They are basic rights and entitlements designed to
create for the first time a level political playing field.

" Sinn Féin are keen to see this business completed speedily and the early
restoration of the all-Ireland power sharing institutions. Even the DUP must
now accept that the only situation in which they will have executive power
will be in the Good Friday Agreement institutions alongside Sinn Féín." ENDS




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